Explore the New Alfred Remote: Features and Insights

Explore the New Alfred Remote: Features and Insights

The newly launched Alfred Remote, priced at $5, boasts a sleek design and user-friendly interface, though its practical applications remain somewhat elusive to me.

It feels like ages since I first noticed the “Remote” icon in Alfred 2, which only displayed a “Coming Soon” message for the longest time. The actual release of the app came as a pleasant surprise after such a long period of silence.

Explore the New Alfred Remote: Features and Insights

On the upside, Alfred Remote is visually appealing with its well-crafted icons and smooth navigation through its various “pages” — akin to browser tabs or iOS folders — which organize items like Applications, Preferences, and System Commands. Adding or customizing these pages is a breeze, simply by tapping a “+” sign.

Those familiar with creating Alfred workflows will find the process quite intuitive. The design clearly emphasizes both aesthetics and functionality.

Linking your iOS device with your Mac allows you to utilize Alfred Remote to execute actions like launching apps or opening specific folders. However, the app supports running scripts and commands, providing flexibility to tailor it to your needs.

Despite these features, I found myself questioning the real-world utility of Alfred Remote.

For instance, while I can launch iTunes remotely, I lack the ability to control specific playlists or albums directly from my iPhone. This limitation extends to other apps as well; launching an app like Safari or Mail is possible, but any further interaction requires being physically at the Mac, which defeats the purpose of using the remote app over just using the iOS versions of these apps.

My initial excitement waned as I pondered the practical use of controlling my Mac from my iPhone within the confines of the same Wi-Fi network. I had hoped for more versatility, perhaps even the ability to check on my Mac’s status remotely from anywhere.

The pairing process between the devices also felt more cumbersome than necessary, involving a 12-character passphrase that must be entered manually, which contrasts sharply with the simpler connectivity options available like Bluetooth pairing.

While I see potential in Alfred Remote for triggering complex Keyboard Maestro macros or specific workflows, I’m still searching for scenarios where it would be more convenient than using Alfred directly on my Mac.

The app’s design and ease of use are commendable, and I find myself eager to discover compelling use cases for it.


Patricia is a well-respected author and tech enthusiast who has made significant contributions to the Apple community. Writing for TUAW, Patricia brings a wealth of knowledge about Apple products, including the iPhone, iPad, and MacBook. Her insightful articles and guides help readers navigate the ever-evolving world of Apple technology. With a knack for breaking down complex topics into easy-to-understand content, Patricia has become a trusted voice for Apple fans everywhere.