Samsung's 2016 Smart TV remote controls all your devices

Samsung's 2016 Smart TVs have a new interface and remote combo that could save a lot of hassle.

It's not too hard to simplify your home theater if you get a Harmony remote or the right HDMI-CEC gear, but Samsung wants the experience to be even simpler than that. Its 2016 Smart TVs are launching with a Smart Control remote that can recognize and control all kinds of devices, including game consoles, dedicated media hubs and your service provider's set-top box. Theoretically, you only need the one Tizen-powered remote to steer your whole media setup -- a big deal if you're tired of shuffling multiple remotes to start a movie.

That refinement extends to the software, too. The TVs will center on a new Smart Hub interface that merges content from multiple sources in one place, saving you from hopping between different apps. You can reorder it if you like, as well. This isn't a completely novel concept, to be sure (we've seen elements of this in game consoles, for example), but it could be very useful when it's baked right into your TV.

As for what the TV hardware is like? Samsung's not saying more right now, but you'll likely get an earful at its evening press event on January 5th.