Title:
REMOTE CONTROL CADDY
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A remote control caddy includes a hand portion in the shape of a human hand, a forearm portion in the shape of a human forearm, and a wrist portion in the shape of a human wrist positioned between the hand portion and the forearm portion. The hand portion includes an upwardly-facing palm surface and five fingers, with the hand portion being configured to selectively receive and hold a remote control on the palm surface. Additionally, the wrist portion is bent such that the hand portion is angled from the forearm portion with the palm surface being substantially horizontal. The fingers may be at least slightly curved back toward the palm surface. The remote control caddy may include a plurality of LEDs to provide light upon receipt of a remote control. Further, a plurality of remote control caddies may be coupled together to selectively hold a plurality of remote controls.



Inventors:
Valmore, William D. (Indianapolis, IN, US)
Application Number:
12/052308
Publication Date:
09/25/2008
Filing Date:
03/20/2008
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A47F7/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
MAY, ROBERT J
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
WOODARD, EMHARDT, HENRY, REEVES & WAGNER, LLP (INDIANAPOLIS, IN, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A device, comprising: at least one remote control caddy having a hand portion in the shape of a human hand, a forearm portion in the shape of a human forearm, and a wrist portion in the shape of a human wrist positioned between said hand portion and said forearm portion; wherein said hand portion includes an upwardly-facing palm surface and five fingers, wherein said hand portion is configured to selectively receive and hold at least one remote control on said palm surface, wherein said wrist portion is bent such that said hand portion is angled from said forearm portion with said palm surface being substantially horizontal, and wherein said fingers are at least slightly curved back toward said palm surface.

2. The device of claim 1, wherein said arm portion includes a bottom surface, wherein said bottom surface is substantially flat and configured to support said remote control caddy.

3. The device of claim 1, further comprising a pad positioned on said palm surface.

4. The device of claim 1, wherein said hand portion is in the shape of a female human hand.

5. The device of claim 1, further comprising a plurality of LEDs disposed within said hand portion and operable to provide light for a select amount of time when a remote control is placed on said palm surface.

6. The device of claim 5, wherein said LEDs are also operable to provide light for a select amount of time when a remote control is removed from said palm surface.

7. The device of claim 5, wherein said LEDs are pressure-activated.

8. The device of claim 1, wherein said arm portion includes a bottom surface, further comprising a suction cup engaged with said bottom surface for contact with a support surface.

9. The device of claim 1, further comprising a plurality of said remote control caddies configured to selectively couple together to hold a plurality of remote controls.

10. The device of claim 9, wherein each of said remote control caddies includes first and second connectors oppositely extending outward from said forearm portion, wherein each of said first connectors is configured to couple with one of said second connectors to couple said remote control caddies together.

11. The device of claim 10, wherein each of said first connectors includes a positive magnet and each of said second connectors includes a negative magnet.

12. The device of claim 10, wherein each of said first connectors includes a ball and each of said second connectors includes a socket configured to selectively receive said ball.

13. The device of claim 10, wherein each of said first connectors includes a larger tubular member and each of said second connectors includes a smaller tubular member configured to be selectively inserted and friction fit within said larger tubular member.

14. The device of claim 10, wherein each of said first connectors includes a forward-facing hook and each of said second connectors includes a rearward facing hook configured to mate with said forward-facing hook.

15. The device of claim 1, further comprising a remote control positioned on said palm surface of said remote control caddy.

16. The device of claim 1, wherein said palm surface is substantially planar.

17. The device of claim 1, wherein said hand portion, said wrist portion, and said forearm portion are integrally formed such that said remote control caddy is unitary and monolithic.

18. A device, comprising: at least one illuminating remote control caddy with a base portion extending up from a support surface and a hand portion extending laterally from said base portion, wherein said hand portion includes a palm surface and five fingers, said fingers being slightly bent toward said palm surface, said palm surface and said fingers at least partially defining a space configured to selectively receive a remote control unit, wherein said hand portion is in the shape of a human hand; wherein said hand portion includes at least one light providing source to provide illumination when a remote control is placed on said palm surface.

19. The device of claim 18, further comprising a wrist portion positioned between said base portion and said hand portion, wherein said base portion is in the shape of a human forearm.

20. The device of claim 18, further comprising a plurality of said remote control caddies configured to selectively couple together to hold a plurality of remote controls.

Description:

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

This application is based on provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/896,634, filed Mar. 23, 2007, and priority and the benefit of Ser. No. 60/896,634 is claimed in the present application to the extent the subject matter of this application is found in that provisional application.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present disclosure generally relates to a caddy for holding a remote control, and more specifically, to a plurality of remote control caddies able to be interconnected together, each caddy being in the shape of a human hand.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Misplacing and searching for remote controls are difficult frustrations experienced by many people. The nature of a remote control and its use provide that the remote control will be picked up, used, and returned to various locations, often multiple times in a single day. Additionally, certain technologically advancements have resulted in some control functions only being available through the use of a remote control. Accordingly, the ease of being able to locate a remote control has become increasingly important.

Some remote control caddies have been developed which collect numerous remote controls in a single container, subjecting the remote controls to jostling, scratching, scraping or other such damage and/or unintended activation.

A need exists for an improved remote control caddy.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

In one embodiment, a device comprises at least one remote control caddy having a hand portion in the shape of a human hand, a forearm portion in the shape of a human forearm, and a wrist portion in the shape of a human wrist positioned between the hand portion and the forearm portion. The hand portion includes an upwardly-facing palm surface and five fingers, with the hand portion being configured to selectively receive and hold at least one remote control on the palm surface. Additionally, the wrist portion is bent such that the hand portion is angled from the forearm portion with the palm surface being substantially horizontal. Further, the fingers are at least slightly curved back toward the palm surface.

In another embodiment, a device comprises at least one illuminating remote control caddy with a base portion extending up from a support surface and a hand portion extending laterally from the base portion. The hand portion includes a palm surface and five fingers, the fingers being slightly bent toward the palm surface. The palm surface and the fingers at least partially define a space configured to selectively receive a remote control unit. Additionally, the hand portion is in the shape of a human hand. Further, the hand portion includes at least one light providing source to provide illumination when a remote control is placed on the palm surface.

DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a remote control caddy according to an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of an interconnected series of remote control caddies according to an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional side view of a connection mechanism used to interconnect remote control caddies according to an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 4 is another cross-sectional side view of a connection mechanism used to interconnect remote control caddies according to an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 5 is a side view of a connection mechanism used to interconnect remote control caddies according to an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 6 is another perspective view of a remote control caddy according to an embodiment of the present invention.

DESCRIPTION OF THE ILLUSTRATED EMBODIMENTS

For the purposes of promoting an understanding of the principles of the invention, reference will now be made to the embodiments illustrated in the drawings and specific language will be used to describe the same. It will nevertheless be understood that no limitation of the scope of the invention is thereby intended, such alterations and further modifications in the illustrated device, and such further applications of the principles of the invention as illustrated therein are contemplated as would normally occur to one skilled in the art to which the invention relates.

The present disclosure is directed to a remote control caddy in the shape of a human hand configured to hold a remote control. In certain embodiments, the remote control caddy may be interconnected with a plurality of other remote control caddies to create a string of remote control caddies holding numerous remotes. In certain embodiments, the remote control caddy may optionally include a suction cup positioned on the bottom surface of the caddy to assist in the stable attachment of the caddy to a surface. Additionally, the remote control caddy may include lights, such as light emitting diodes (LED's), to light the remote control caddy according to various situations, such as when a remote is placed in or removed from the caddy, as examples.

FIG. 1 illustrates a remote control caddy 20 for holding a remote control 22, according to one embodiment of the present disclosure. The remote control caddy 20 includes a hand portion 24 having a palm surface 26 and fingers 28, a wrist portion 30 and a base portion or forearm portion or arm portion 32 having a bottom or base surface 34. As illustrated, remote control caddy 20 may include the shape of a hand and partial arm, with the caddy beginning just below the elbow of an arm and extending to the fingertips. The remote control used with caddy 20 may be any type of remote control for use with various types of electronic devices, such TVs, VCRs, DVDs, stereos, ceiling fans, gas logs for a gas fireplace, garage door openers, lights, or other types of devices.

As illustrated, hand portion 24 preferably includes a partial grasp configuration such that remote control 22 fits snugly within hand portion 24, resting on palm surface 26 and selectively secured in place by fingers 28. In such embodiments, the components or portions of hand portion 24 define a space configured for selective receipt of the remote control. In the illustrated embodiment, hand portion 24 extends laterally from arm portion 32, with wrist portion 30 being bent or angled such that palm surface 26 of hand portion 24 is substantially horizontal. In some embodiments, palm surface 26 may be substantially flat and planar. Additionally, fingers 28 may be slightly bent toward palm surface 26, as illustrated. However, it should be appreciated that hand portion 24 can be configured differently as would occur to one skilled in the art, so long as the hand portion is able to selectively receive a remote control therein. Additionally, hand portion 24 may be sized and configured to receive a variety of different sized and shaped remotes. Further, remote control caddy 20 may be configured in a variety of sizes, configurations and aesthetics, including various sizes, configurations and aesthetics corresponding to female or male, adult or child human hands. Remote control caddy 20 may be in the shape of a right or left hand.

Remote control caddy 20 may optionally include a pad 40 positioned on and lining palm surface 26 of hand portion 24. Pad 40 may be composed of a plastic material, such as a relatively soft elastomer material to provide a relatively cushioning surface for the remote control to rest and/or provide protection for the remote control against scratches, scrapes or other similar types of damage. Additionally, pad 40 may provide a quieter, muffled sound when the remote control is placed in hand portion 24 of remote control caddy 20. In certain embodiments, pad 40 is a relatively thin layer of elastomer material.

Remote control caddy 20 may be positioned on a support surface 44 with base surface 34 being substantially flat and contacting or resting on the support surface. In other embodiments, remote control caddy 20 may optionally include a suction cup 42 extending down from base surface 34 to assist in securing remote control caddy 20 to surface 44 and provide increased stability to caddy 20. In certain embodiments, suction cup 42 may also be composed of a plastic material, such as an elastomer for example. Suction cup 42 may include a snap-fit connection with base surface 34 to allow for the attachment and/or removability of the suction cup. Additionally, in certain embodiments, arm portion 32 may have increased weight, as compared to hand portion 24 and wrist portion 26, to enhance the stability of caddy 20. In such embodiments, the added or increased weight of arm portion 32 may be positioned adjacent bottom surface 34 of caddy 20 to increase the stability of the caddy.

In certain embodiments, remote control caddy 20 is a unitary and monolithic device, with hand portion 24, wrist portion 30 and arm portion 32 being integrally formed. Remote control caddy 20 may be composed of one or more plastic materials, such as polystyrene or elastomer materials, as examples. In certain embodiments, remote control caddy 20 is formed from a plastic injection molding manufacturing process. In other embodiments, remote control caddy 20 is composed of wood materials or metal materials. Additionally, remote control caddy 20 may be transparent, and could include a tinted transparent color. In other embodiments, remote control caddy 20 could include a solid color, stripes, polka dots, and/or designs such as a paisley design or a leopard skin design. Additionally, caddy 20 could other indicia or designs such as hearts, roses, butterflies, or other such designs or indicia as would generally occur to one skilled in the art. In certain embodiments, caddy 20 may include colors and/or designs associated with a particular college, university, professional sporting team or other such group having associated color and design schemes.

Remote control caddy 20 may be placed on various surfaces, including an end table, the floor, a mantel, an arm of a couch or chair, or any other such surface as would generally occur to one skilled in the art. In certain embodiments, remote control caddy 20 is preferably placed on a relatively flat and level surface to ensure the positioning of remote control 22 in hand portion 24. In certain alternative embodiments, remote control caddy 20 could be used to hold various other items, such as keys, jewelry, papers, cellular telephones, paging devices and/or other such items as would generally occur to one skilled in the art.

As illustrated in FIG. 2, a plurality of remote control caddies 20 may be selectively connected or coupled together, permanently or removably, to create a series to hold a plurality of remote controls. In such embodiments, each caddy 20 may include opposing interlocking mechanisms to allow for the connection of a plurality of remote control caddies 20 creating an interlocking series. The opposing interlocking mechanisms may be positioned about arm portion 32 (see FIG. 1) adjacent base surface 34. In certain embodiments, the opposing interlocking mechanisms may be positioned approximately 180 degrees apart in a relatively straight alignment. In other embodiments, the opposing interlocking mechanisms may be positioned oblique to each other.

In some embodiments, each caddy 20 may include opposing linking connectors 80 and 81, as illustrated in FIG. 2. As illustrated, connectors 80 and 81 may include hook configurations such that caddies 20 are interlocked, yet allowing for relatively easy removal of one or more caddies 20 from the interlocking series.

In other embodiments, each caddy 20 includes a positive magnet connector 50 and an opposing negative magnet connector 51. In such embodiments, positive magnet connectors 50 of caddies 20 are configured to releasably attach to negative magnetic connectors 51, as illustrated in FIG. 3.

In certain other embodiments, each caddy 20 may include opposing snap-fit, ball-in-socket connectors 60 and 61, examples of which are illustrated in FIG. 4. In such embodiments, connector 60 may be a socket connector and connector 61 may be a ball connector, forming a ball-in-socket type joint. Additionally, connector 60 may be sufficiently flexible to create a snap-fit connection with connector 61 upon insertion of connector 61 in connector 60. However, it should be appreciated that other snap-fit and/or ball-in-socket connections may be used to selectively interconnect remote control caddies 20.

In yet other embodiments, each caddy 20 may include opposing friction fit connectors 70 and 71, examples of which are illustrated in FIG. 5. In such embodiments, connectors 70 and 71 may include concentric tubes, with a smaller tube connector 70 creating a friction fit inside a larger tube connector 71 upon sufficient insertion of connector 70 in connector 71. It is contemplated that other friction fit connectors creating a friction fit therebetween may be used to selectively interconnect remote control caddies 20. As another example, caddies 20 could be connected together via prong-in-socket arrangements, similar to typical electrical outlets. In such embodiments, each caddy 20 could include a prong connector and an opposing socket connector. However, it should be appreciated that remote control caddies 20 may include various other types of interlocking components to selectively interconnect the caddies together to form a series.

Additionally, remote control caddies 20 may be releasably connected together to form an interlocking series in various other manners as would generally occur to one skilled in the art. As examples, caddies 20 may be connected together via hook-in-loop fasteners, such as Velcro®, releasable adhesive materials, snaps, male/female interlocking mechanisms and/or locking caps to secure adjacent connectors. In such embodiments involving locking caps, the connectors extending from the caddies may include slots or grooves configured to receive ends of the locking caps to assist in securing the connectors together.

Additionally, in certain embodiments, remote control caddy 20 may include electronics incorporated into the caddy. To that end, caddy 20 may include built-in lights, such as light emitting diodes (LED's), which may light up when a remote control is placed in and/or removed from caddy 20, alerting a user of the particular event. As an example illustrated in FIG. 6, LED's 90 are disposed or positioned within hand portion 24 of remote control caddy 20. The LED's may provide constant light according to a certain situation, or may include flashing and/or chasing patterns. In certain embodiments, the LED's may be pressure-activated and/or may be activated by a pressure switch (not shown) positioned on palm surface 26. In such cases, the LED's may provide light upon receipt of a remote control on the palm surface. In other embodiments, the LED's may also provide light upon the removal of the remote control from the palm surface. Additionally, remote control caddy 20 may include a circuit board of the integrated type, or other such appropriate electronic device to control and/or direct the electronics associated with caddy 20. In such embodiments, remote control caddy 20 may further include an integrated circuit chip incorporated into the caddy for control of the LED's or other such incorporated electronics. Other components associated with caddy 20 and/or integrated into the caddy might include rechargeable batteries and/or one or more insulated wires.

While the invention has been illustrated and described in detail in the drawings and foregoing description, the same is to be considered as illustrative and not restrictive in character, it being understood that only the preferred embodiments have been shown and described and that all changes and modifications that come within the spirit of the invention are desired to be protected.





 
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