9 Remote Control Apps for iPhone

The iPhone is a great device for controlling your Mac remotely. Whether you want to interact with iTunes or take complete control of the keyboard and trackpad, a range of solutions are readily available. These range from completely free to $24.99 (for a full-featured VNC tool).

This roundup will take a look at nine iPhone/iPod Touch apps for taking remote control of your Mac. Several come with free “trial” versions, allowing you to get a feel for the software before purchasing the full version.

Apple Remote

Apple Remote

Apple Remote

Available completely free from Apple, the Remote app allows you to control an impressive range of iTunes features. Navigate between songs and videos, view artwork on your device, and alter settings – all from the palm of your hand. It plays great with AirTunes too.

Price: Free
Developer: Apple
Requires: iPhone/iPod Touch

RemoteTap

RemoteTap

RemoteTap

A great VNC app (one which shows your desktop in real-time), which can also swap between spaces, multiple displays, and act as a control for Front Row. The list of features is very, very thorough and I’d recommend visiting their site to take a look at everything on offer.

Price: $6.99
Developer: ReadPixel
Requires: iPhone/iPod Touch

Air Mouse Pro

Air Mouse Pro

Air Mouse Pro

Definitely the best looking application featured, Air Mouse Pro is both a fully-functioning trackpad, “air mouse”, keyboard, and remote control for media playback. A really innovative use of the iPhone’s accelerometer to move your cursor around the screen.

Price: $5.99
Developer: Mobile Air Mouse
Requires: iPhone/iPod Touch

Rowmote

Rowmote

Rowmote

The simplest app featured, Rowmote imitates the Apple Remote bundled with some machines. Simplicity is the key, offering only a few controls and a basic interface. It will also allow you to switch between applications easily, and instructions are available to set it up with an Apple TV.

Price: $0.99
Developer: Evan Schoenberg
Requires: iPhone/iPod Touch

WiFiRemote

WiFiRemote

WiFiRemote

WiFiRemote is a 8-in-1 wireless remote control with a decent range of features. These include a multi-touch trackpad, text-pad, landscape keyboard support, an accelerometer mouse and various media players. If you can look past the dated interface, it works pretty well.

Price: $5
Developer: mbpowertools
Requires: iPhone/iPod Touch

KickStart

KickStart

KickStart

KickStart doesn’t offer a wide range of functionality but provides a decent interface for remotely launching and closing applications. It can manage any app present in your Dock, and also remotely shut down/sleep your Mac. It’s a shame that full remote control tools aren’t present.

Price: $1.99
Developer: BananaGlue
Requires: iPhone/iPod Touch

RemoteJr

RemoteJr

Remote Jr

Remote Jr will either work as a simple remote control when in portrait view, or display a full interactive version of your Mac desktop when tilted sideways. Functioning over Wi-Fi, 3G or EDGE, you can also customize the colors of the remote control display.

Price: $5
Developer: Remote Jr
Requires: iPhone/iPod Touch

Snatch

Snatch

Snatch

Snatch is a remote trackpad and mouse for your Mac, which works works surprisingly well. Multi-touch is supported, and the latest version also comes with an application launcher for quickly opening a particular piece of software.

Price: $5.99 (or a free test version)
Developer: Hoofien
Requires: iPhone/iPod Touch

Jaadu VNC

Jaadu VNC

Jaadu VNC

By an enormous margin, Jaadu VNC is the most expensive app in the roundup. A variety of features are supported, but mixed reviews mean that it may be better to first try out a slightly cheaper VNC offering such as RemoteTap.

Price: $24.99
Developer: Jaadu VNC
Requires: iPhone/iPod Touch

Conclusion

I’ve covered the apps which I feel to be most useful (and those which I’ve tried myself in the past). I know that a few others are available, so feel free to share your experience and let me know if I’ve missed any real gems.

Have fun, shamelessly show off to your friends, and enjoy the convenience of remotely controlling your Mac!