Aligned with the 2023 CEDIA Expo, Lutron has announced a new addition to its Caséta product line. Specifically, Lutron is introducing a paddle form factor for its popular Pico remote. Lutron added the paddle-based Diva dimmer and Claro switch to Caséta last year. This follows that launch with a near identical design, all packed into the small packaging we’re already familiar with for Pico remotes.
The Pico paddle remote is a simple companion switch to operate other Caséta smart home products. It can pair directly (no bridge required), or you can link it to your smart home through the Caséta Smart Home Hub.
The new paddle remote comes with all the goodness we’re used to for Picos—sturdy design, long (10-year) battery life, all in the small, standard decorator [some might call it Decora] switch size. It uses Lutron’s proprietary Clear Connect, so it’s compatible with most consumer smart home products from Lutron—not just Caséta. And like all Pico remotes, it uses all the same integrated mounting solutions, including pedestals, visor clips, and wall plate mounting brackets.
Lutron’s Diva and Claro for Caséta have been well received by consumers, particularly with those who prefer the standard look and function of a traditional paddle switch. The new Pico paddle remote now extends that line, allowing you to add switches wirelessly without adding push-buttons into the mix. You can mount it anywhere directly on a surface. Or, with Lutron’s mounting bracket, you can either mount it over a standard switch box or “float” it next to existing switches in a multi-gang switch plate.
But How Does It Feel?
While it may seem like an odd question, one of the things we were wondering is how this new remote would feel to operate. Getting the resistance and physical operation of a remote switch like this can be tricky—and few have done it well. Lutron’s delivered here with an operational feel that’s almost identical to its Diva and Claro paddles. First off, it’s a traditional rocker that turns the light on when you press the top (to preset “on” level if the light is off or full on if the light is already on) and off when you press the bottom. So, happily, it’s not a “Gunther switch” as the guys over at HomeTech.FM might say. It’s possible that others in your household would never even know the difference between this and a wired switch. And that’s the goal, isn’t it?
Lutron’s Pico remotes have always been among our favorite products. But even as sturdy as the remotes themselves are, those buttons always feel a bit wobbly. And other manufacturers’ similar “companion” remotes have all missed the mark on feel in one way or another. Leviton’s Anywhere Companion Switch for Decora Smart feels a bit too “squishy,” Insteon’s Smart Remotes feel more like dog clickers than switches, and similar Z-wave offerings have felt too firm. Lutron got this one just right.
The new Pico paddle remote is available starting today at various online retailers, including homedepot.com and bestbuy.com. Expect it to arrive at Amazon.com and in retail stores soon, too.
The remote will cost about $20 on its own, and it will be available in various starter kits, too, including switch bundles like you’re already used to seeing with Pico remotes.
For now, the Pico paddle remote will only be available in white. Hopefully that will change over time.