Control Windows Media Center from afar with Ceton's My Media Center app
Remember Ceton Companion? It let Windows Media Center users control their PCs from any Android, iOS, or Windows Phone device.
Now the app is available for Kindle Fire, Nook, and Windows 8 as well, and it has a new name: My Media Center.
Why the name-change? In part to avoid errors like the one I originally made: The app works with Windows Media Center whether you have a Ceton tuner installed or not.
But the bigger news is My Media Center's availability for Windows RT and Windows 8, meaning tablet and laptop users alike can now get in on the action. And this version leverages the new OS with a couple rather slick features.
Specifically, you can see live tiles for both recent and scheduled recordings, a really cool way to browse your TV library. Indeed, if you're using a Windows tablet, this will give you arguably the best interface ever for controlling Windows Media Center. Forget the remote—just tap to record, tap to watch, tap to search, and so on.
In case it's not abundantly obvious, the whole experience is best when the app is paired with a PC that has a TV tuner. That said, you can just as effectively use My Media Center to navigate your music, photo, and movie libraries.
The app costs $4.99, which I think is a small price to pay for such a useful extension of the Windows Media Center experience.
However, I wasn't able to test-drive it owing to some glitches with my Windows 8 testbed. (Once I'm able to get things working, I'll update the post.) If you've had any experience with the app, hit the comments and let your fellow readers know how it went.
Contributing Editor Rick Broida writes about business and consumer technology. Ask for help with your PC hassles at firstname.lastname@example.org, or try the treasure trove of helpful folks in the PC World Community Forums. Sign up to have the Hassle-Free PC newsletter e-mailed to you each week.