The smart fridge and other future kitchen marvels
by Simon Ward | 16 January 2012 | 0 commentsTweet
A fridge that can suggest recipes based on its contents is just one example of how technology could revolutionise our cooking.
A new smart fridge has been unveiled that can order your shopping for you and download recipes.
LG’s Smart fridge made its public debut at the International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. It has an LCD touchscreen, camera and internet connection. It can order food for you via your online shopping account when stocks are low. It can even suggest a recipe based on the items you have in the fridge AND set the oven wirelessly ready to cook it (see more on the smart oven below).
And what will all this ice-cool technology cost you? A mere £2,000 when it goes on sale here in the UK later in the year.
So-called ‘smart’ technology hasn’t quite made it to most of our kitchens yet. That’s despite companies developing all sorts of whizzy equipment and gadgets, complete with internet connections, with the aim of making life easier and more controllable.
Here’s are some other kitchen examples:
LG has developed internet-connected ovens that you can control from your smartphone. So if you’re cooking a roast but are busy doing something else, you can tell the oven to slow the cooking process down from your phone. It can also download and cook recipes for you (although you have to supply the ingredients).
A US company called Fulton Innovation has developed a technology it calls ecoupled, which basically uses magnetic induction to power products via a wireless device, for example a smartphone. So in the case of this frying pan, you don’t need a hob to heat it for cooking. And the device that's connected to the pan can control the temperature and cooking time.
Imagine putting an ingredient down on the kitchen counter and it identifys the item, then projects ingredients and recipes onto the counter. Then you just choose the size and depth of the surface you want to cook on (no pots and pans required), select the temperature and start cooking. Electrolux is one of a number of companies looking at this type of innovation.
One of the entries in Electrolux’s 2011 Design Labs competition for budding product designers that attracted particular attention, the laptop kitchen concept is the brainchild of one Dragan Trenchevski. It has a touchscreen and, where the keyboard would be, a removable chopping board with an induction plate underneath. While it might be good for rustling up some beans while watching internet TV on a camping trip, we’re not convinced it would be a good idea for cooking a fry-up.