I'm soldering a test board for a robot radio. To use it, you program a robot to respond to one of eight messages sent by the hand controller. The robot has its own radio and will reply back to the messages you send it. The handheld controller will have an LCD so human readable messages can be displayed.
The hand controller communicates with your robot like we communicate with rovers on Mars. Messages sent to the rover are acted upon, but intelligently, not as an automatic reponse like an RC car. That way, if you send a message to drive off a cliff, the robot can analyze your message and refuse to comply. Not only will it refuse, it will also send a message back about why it isn't complying.