Mobility

Review: LogMeIn Ignition for Android smartphones

LogMeIn Ignition is a robust option for remotely accessing and controlling multiple Mac or PC computers via your Android smartphone.

LogMeIn recently released an Android version of its Ignition mobile remote desktop app; the app allows you to access and control multiple Mac or PC computers from the palm of your hand.

Specifications

  • Product: LogMeIn Ignition for Android
  • Language: EN, ES, FR, DE, IT, NL, JP
  • Compatibility: Android 1.5 and greater
  • Security: AES 256-bit encryption (Learn more about LogMeIn security)
  • Price: $29.99

Who is the target market?

LogMeIn creates products for business users and consumers, and LogMeIn Ignition for Android straddles that line. You can use it to access multiple home PCs or access PCs across your enterprise. Because it offers a secure connection, you can do more advanced tasks like add users within server management consoles, restart Exchange servers, or check backup operations.

What problem does it solve?

While remote access isn't a new feature in the mobile applications market, LogMeIn Ignition brings a robust, easy-to-use remote access tool to the Android platform.

Standout features

Ease of set up

I wasn't sure what to expect when I shelled out $30 for LogMeIn Ignition for Android. LogMeIn's product tour touted the product as easy to use and set up, but I wasn't sure just how much configuring I would need to do on the computer or Android device side. It turns out that setting up your computer and your Android device is easy.

First, you need to create a user account at LogMeIn's website. This account is what you will use to log in via your Android device or another remote computer.

Next, you will need to download and install LogMeIn Free (or the premium LogMeIn Pro if you want more advanced features) on the computer you want to access remotely. You will log in to LogMeIn Free with the account you created on the website. In addition to supporting mobile devices, this desktop app will allow you to remotely access your computer from any other Internet-connected computer.

Finally, download and install the LogMeIn Ignition app ($29.99) from the Android Market. Then, just as you did with the desktop client, log in with your LogMeIn.com account.

One-touch access to remote computers

Once you have installed the LogMeIn Free (or Pro) software on each of your computers, accessing them from within LogMeIn Ignition is very simple.

LogMeIn Ignition requires you to log in before being able to access any of your computers; this means you can store all of your usernames and passwords for your remote computers within the app. Once you're authenticated via the app, simply click the name of a remote computer to be instantly logged in and taken to your remote desktop.

Multi-touch navigation

Once logged into your remote computer, LogMeIn Ignition gives you a couple of ways to use the touchscreen to navigate: Screen Moves or Mouse Moves.

With the Screen Moves setting enabled, the cursor is stationary, and you are able to drag the desktop around in order to place the item you would like to click under the cursor. This is the default when you install LogMeIn Ignition.

With the Mouse Moves setting, you get a more traditional desktop feel because you move the cursor around the screen with your finger. This just seems much more intuitive than having a static cursor.

In addition to these two modes, you have pinch-to-zoom multi-touch support, which allows you to quickly zoom in or out of your desktop to make a menu or other item easier to read or click.

What's wrong?

LogMeIn Ignition has performed very well in the few days that I've been using it. There are a two things that may impact your usage of LogMeIn Ignition, so I think they're worth noting; however, I do not consider either issue to be a flaw of the software.

Device screen size may affect ease of navigation

Depending on the size of your device's screen, you may find it more or less difficult to navigate your virtual desktop. Using LogMeIn Ignition on the 4.3" screen of my EVO 4G is comfortable, but I'm not sure if you will get the same experience if you're using a smaller device such as a Droid Eris or an HTC Hero.

Time-consuming installation

Also, depending on the number of computers you want to access remote, the process of installing LogMeIn Free (or Pro) could be time-consuming. I have 6 computers that I wanted to connect, so it took a while to get things set up.

Competitive products

Bottom line for business

LogMeIn Ignition is a quick and easy-to-use option for accessing remote computers via your Android smartphone. As mobile devices become standard within the enterprise, having a reliable, secure, and easy-to-use remote control app will be a requirement. LogMeIn has been serving IT departments for years with products like LogMeIn Backup and LogMeIn Rescue, so it is nice to see the company extend its products to the Android platform.

Download LogMeIn Ignition by scanning the QR code above.

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