If you read some of my hardware reviews in the past, you know that I’ve been pretty impressed with ROCCAT’s line of gaming accessories, mainly their gaming keyboards and mice. What you may not know is that ROCCAT recently released their new ROCCAT Power Grid app as an open beta for all to try out. This is an app that will work on any Windows powered machine and can function without the need for any ROCCAT accessories at all. This is strictly a software solution to get the most out of your current hardware, using nothing but your mobile phone. For starters, head on over to ROCCAT’s official website here and download the host software to your Windows machine along with the app for either iOS or Android. For this review, I’ll mainly be looking at the iOS version, though both apps are pretty much exactly the same.
The ROCCAT Power Grid app is meant to be a companion app for your PC. Out of the box, it has the ability to display detailed system stats, sound controls, function as a message center, as well as a shortcut display for many Windows 7 features. Again, you’ll need to install both parts to make use of this – the host app and the mobile app. You’ll need to launch the host app first, find your IP address, and then connect to that address via the mobile Power-Grid app. Once connected, you’ll be able to control a ton of Windows features remotely from your mobile phone.
My favorite is being able to look at the system stats. You’ll be able to get a quick glance at vital information concerning your hardware. This is useful for gamers who need to tweak or watch their CPU and memory usage. The sound settings are also pretty useful and allow you to tweak volume on your machine on the fly. If you look through the settings, there’s even a really useful app for those who use laptops or non-full sized keyboards. You can set up your mobile phone to be a number pad, which I think is pretty neat.
The most useful tab though on the Power-Grid Launcher host app is the Editor. The Editor allows you to make your own custom grids and controls in which you can literally create a grid that does anything you want. You do need to play around with the editor a bit to see what does what and how to edit those parameters. It’s really powerful, but takes a lot of looking around and experimenting.
If you have ROCCAT products that are ROCCAT Talk enabled, you’ll be able to use the Power-Grid to control certain aspects of those accessories, mainly being able to change Talk FX settings and changing the backlit colors of those devices on the fly. There’s probably more it can do besides that, but I haven’t dug deep enough to see what else it can do.
Because the app is in beta essentially, there are some bugs that pop up every now and then. For starters, some of the grids don’t always appear correctly or load at all. Other times, they just won’t control what they are intended to, but this is rare. Despite these issues, the ROCCAT Power Grid really is an app that most Windows power users should download. It has a ton of potential if you’re willing to dig deep into it and is a great way to have any shortcuts right in the palm of your hands.
The ROCCAT Power-Grid is one of the neatest and most interesting PC control apps I have ever seen. What’s amazing to me is that ROCCAT is providing this for free right now during the beta phase. There is so much you can do with this app, I can’t believe they aren’t charging for it. Even if you don’t create your own grids, you’ll get a lot out of it, but of course the best functionality comes from those who really explore the app.
App Store Link: ROCCAT Power Grid
In-App Purchasing: Yes
Compatible Devices: Requires iOS 5.1 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. This app is optimized for iPhone 5.
ROCCAT™ Power-Grid™ is a fully-customizable remote for your PC. It lets you connect to, monitor, and control your PC and games from your smartphone –all without having to leave the action.
Aimed at gamers and PC enthusiasts alike, Power-Grid™ is a completely-customizable free smartphone app that works as an advanced remote control for your PC. After installing the accompanying PC software, the app relays a host of convenient, time-saving information in the form of fully-configurable “Grids”, which the user can then interact with right from their smartphone, without having to minimize or close the game or application they are running.
Instead of lying idle on your desk or in your pocket, get the most out of your smartphone with Power-Grid™. Keep an eye on your Facebook and Twitter feeds without having to leave the action in your favourite game; ensure your PC’s vital system stats are in order while you’re in the next room; design your own Grid to suit the games you play or the applications you use, and lots, lots more.
Power-Grid™ comes pre-loaded with the following four customizable Grids:
1.Incoming Center – keep track of your feeds. Facebook, Twitter, Skype, TeamSpeak, and RSS feeds in this communications HQ.
2.System Stats – monitor your vital system information, such as CPU load, memory and hard drive usage, and more.
3.Sound Control – operate Windows Media Player and iTunes, as well as your system audio settings. Adjust the master volume, or the volume of each application individually.
4.Custom Grids – Power-Grid™ not only connects your smartphone to your PC, it also features a powerful editor that lets you build your own controls to load into your custom grids – for the ultimate in customization.
In addition to the above four Grids, Power-Grid™ also features game-specific Grids for gaming enthusiasts, allowing gamers to execute macros rapidly to get the edge on their opponents in the heat of the battle.
Preset/custom controls and Grids
-Preset Hardware Grids: Numpad, Calculator, Talk® FX, etc.
-Preset app and game Grid compatibility
-Create your own Grids, with your own graphics and custom-color backgrounds
-Drag and drop custom controls to your Grid
-Choose from over 50 preset buttons and controls
-1800+ icons included – for countless individual design possibilities
-Button customization: add texts, backgrounds, icons, effects, and sounds to buttons
-Open function: open applications, documents, folders, website
-Shortcut function: add individual shortcuts to your control buttons
-Macro manager: assign custom macro sequences – with up to 512 commands
-Social feeds for Facebook, Twitter, Skype, e-mail, TeamSpeak, and RSS
-Media player control: play, stop, pause your videos and music, as well as view artist, title, and album
-Mute function: separately mute your master, microphone, and music volume
-Volume control: via volume wheel or slider for each individual application
-CPU: show CPU info and usage
-Drives: show drive capacity, and open with a single click
-Show network usage
-Power functions: system lock, log off, shut down, sleep
-RAM: show RAM info and usage
-ROCCAT™ analogue clock display – comes in four sizes
-ROCC’ clock: digital clock with day and date
-Big stopwatch and timer
-Timer buttons: for eggs, noodles, pizza, tea, etc.
-Import/export controls and Grids, and share with your friends.
Find out more about Power-Grid™ here: http://power-grid.roccat.org/download.
Please note that Power-Grid™ is currently only compatible with Windows 7.
[via App Store]