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Logitech Harmony Elite vs Companion (2021): Choosing the Best Universal Remote

Universal remotes are the perfect solution to have control over multiple smart home devices and home theater setups all from one remote. The competition in the space isn’t as heated as, say, the smartphone scene, but it’s hard to find anything better than the Logitech Harmony Elite or Companion.

The two are similar in more ways than one, from functionality to features. However, the Harmony Elite has a couple of advantages, including an LCD touchscreen and support to control more devices, to name a few. That’s not to say the Harmony Companion doesn’t have its charm, though. It’s relatively more streamlined, delivering a simpler and fuss-free experience.

Logitech Harmony Elite vs Companion Comparison Chart

ModelLogitech Harmony EliteLogitech Harmony Companion
 Logitech Harmony Elite Remote Control, Hub and AppLogitech Harmony Companion All in One Remote Control for Smart Home and Entertainment Devices, Hub &...
PriceCheck PriceCheck Price
TouchscreenYesNo
Controlled DevicesUp to 15Up to 8
Harmony App SupportYesYes
Closed Cabinet ControlYesYes
Virtual AssistantAmazon Alexa, Google AssistantAmazon Alexa, Google Assistant
BatteryRechargeable lithium ionCR2032
CompatibilityAndroid, iOS, Mac, PCAndroid, iOS, Mac, PC
Weight0.36 lbs0.24 lbs

Design and Build

The Logitech Harmony Elite has a squarish design, while the Harmony Companion is more rounded.

Logitech Harmony Elite vs Companion Design and Build
Only the Logitech Harmony Elite (in photo) has a touchscreen.

Looking at the two, the first thing that’ll jump out at you is the display on the Logitech Harmony Elite. It’s a color LCD touchscreen where you can control volume and playback, run Activities (more on that later), and change channels.

Logitech also went with a boxier design for the Harmony Elite. It has a bit more heft to it as well. In comparison, the Harmony Companion has softer curves and smoother edges, and needless to say, it’s lighter.

Now the Harmony Elite has fewer buttons than the Harmony Companion. That isn’t a surprise considering that it has a touchscreen for added functionality. It has a different button layout as well to accommodate said display. Particularly, the buttons for Philips Hue lights and switches are near the bottom, while the Harmony Companion has them near the top.

Both have replaceable batteries, but only the Harmony Elite is rechargeable. Meanwhile, the Harmony Companion is powered by a coin or CR2032 battery, and you’ll have to replace it once it’s out of juice. The good news is it lasts about a year before that happens.

Features and Performance

When it comes to features, the Logitech Harmony Elite only barely edges out the Harmony Companion.

Logitech Harmony Elite vs Companion Features and Performance
A look at the Harmony app.

Right off the bat, the Logitech Harmony Elite can control up to 15 devices, while the Harmony Companion can connect to up to eight. It also comes with two IR blasters instead of one for larger coverage, and of course, both ship with the Harmony Hub.

Across the board, the two are pretty much on par with each other. For one thing, both work with the Harmony app, which is available for Android and iOS, for the record. Thanks to that, you can turn your Android smartphones or iPhones into remotes, so there’s that. They can be used to control devices hidden behind cabinet doors too.

The best part about these remotes is their automation feature, also known as Activities. You can set and schedule things like dimming the lights, turning on the TV and sound systems, and open apps on a smart TV, all in one given sequence. 

For instance, you can designate an Activity as “Watch Movies” and have the Harmony dim your Philips Hue lights, turn on your smart TV and open Netflix, and power on your Bose home theater system with predetermined settings at the tap of a button. Or if you have a gaming console like a PlayStation 4, you can name an Activity “Play PS4.” When you run it, the Harmony will switch on the TV and select the proper HDMI channel on its own. You’ll have to turn the console by yourself, so keep that in mind.

Logitech Harmony Elite vs Companion
The Logitech Harmony Elite (left) and Companion (right).

Both are also compatible with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant for voice controls. That way you can still control your devices even if your hands are dirty or occupied.

Value for Money

The Logitech Harmony Elite costs more than twice than the Harmony Companion.

Logitech Harmony Elite vs Companion Value for Money
The Logitech Harmony Elite in its charging station.

Without a doubt, the Logitech Harmony Elite has that “one remote to rule them all” vibe going for it, so even though it’s expensive, its price tag is justified. That’s because you likely won’t need to use any other remote ever again.

In contrast, the Harmony Companion is a lot cheaper, and since it can more or less do the same things as the Harmony Elite, it’s the more practical pick between the two. Put differently, you get a lot of bang for your buck.

Verdict

If money’s no object, the Logitech Harmony Elite is the better pick.

If you want a somewhat future-proof universal remote, the Logitech Harmony Elite is your best bet here. It supports up to 15 devices and has a rechargeable battery. And while the LCD touchscreen isn’t exactly necessary, it’s a nice touch.

On the other hand, the Harmony Companion is more than enough in most cases. After all, support for up to eight devices is plenty for most people, and as mentioned earlier, it’s more affordable to boot. What’s more, it doesn’t add yet another screen to look at to the mix.

FAQs

📌 What’s the difference between the Logitech Harmony Elite and Companion?

The two are similar in terms of functionality, but the Logitech Harmony Elite has a color LCD touchscreen and rechargeable battery, as well as support for up to 15 devices. The Harmony Companion has more buttons and less weight and supports up to eight devices.

📌 Is the Logitech Harmony Elite worth it?

Even though it’s on the expensive side, the Logitech Harmony Elite is worth getting because of its features, including a touchscreen, support for up to 15 devices, Harmony mobile app, and more.

📌 Is the Logitech Harmony Companion worth the buy?

Yes, the Logitech Harmony Companion is a relatively affordable universal remote that packs a lot of features for its price. That includes Harmony Activities, the Harmony app, control for up to eight devices, and more.

📌 What is the best Logitech Harmony universal remote?

The Logitech Harmony Elite is generally accepted as the best universal remote in the company’s lineup. For starters, it can be used to control up to 15 devices, and it also sports a touchscreen and a rechargeable battery.

Last update on 2020-12-23 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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Vincent Lanaria

Senior Editor, researcher and writer passionate about running, cooking, and how technology mixes with the two.