Humans are inherently lazy. We design and invent things to make our lives easier, faster, and smoother, and we’ve done so since the dawn of time. In the last century alone, we’ve seen cars replace horses, central heating replace hand-built fires, and phones replace the written word.
We’re now moving on to the next level. Smart homes and smart technology are focused on making our initial “lazy person inventions” even more lazy person-friendly. Think hand washing > washing machine > smart washing machine, or pantry > fridge > smart fridge.
There’s no denying it, smart home appliances really will change your life. They’ll save you time and hassle (and maybe even money), enabling you to spend more time doing the things you love.
Here are some of the best smart appliances available today.
Dishwashers are indisputably one of the best time-saving kitchen appliances. No one likes to spend hours cooking a nice meal for friends and family, only to have to spend hours more cleaning all the encrusted pans afterwards.
They first became commercially available in the mid-1950s, eventually becoming commonplace in homes around Europe and North America in the 1970s. They’re due an upgrade.
The Whirlpool model has a stack of features to save you both time and money. For example, it boasts a “smart assistant”, which will let you control it via your smartphone when you’re not at home (as well as giving you updates on a cycle’s progress), a stats monitor which will track how much energy is being used, and a component monitor which will let you know when a part either needs servicing or replacing.
The Miele offering is unique thanks to its “AutoSensor” technology. It’ll automatically determine how much water, detergent, and salt is needed for the amount of dishes in the machine, adjusting the corresponding settings accordingly.
You know what it’s like – you just finish mopping the floor when Fido comes charging in from the garden and ruins your perfect surfaces.
Mopping is boring, slow, and probably bad for your back. Thankfully, companies are now working on alternative solutions to the old “mop-n-bucket” approach.
One of the current market leaders is iRobot, makers of the Scooba 450 – a floor scrubbing robot.
It works on any hard surface (such as tiles, lino, and wood), and can even clean around awkwardly-shaped objects such as toilets and kitchen appliances. It’s only 9 centimeters tall, meaning it can clean under lots of furniture without the need to move anything, and it’s also incredibly easy to use – just fill up the tank and let it do its thing.
Smart Tumble Dryers
Tumble dryers are a blessing for anyone who lives in a sun-averse location. They have a reputation for being energy-hogs, but in practice it’s a lot cheaper (and more practical) to run a dryer for an hour than have clothes-horses scattered throughout your home, and the central heating cranked up all day while you’re at work.
The downside of putting your laundry in a dryer when you head out for the day is that you come back to pile of badly creased clothes. Ironing a family’s-worth of clothes is no fun, and takes away the time saving benefits of using a dryer in the first place.
Enter the “Whirlpool Duet Electric Dryer with Wrinkle Shield“. Although it’ll automatically spin clothes intermittently for up to 90 minutes after the cycle has finished, you can also tell it to spin for longer from your smartphone app. It means if you’re unexpectedly stuck at work or in traffic, you can relax by knowing you won’t have a mountain of ironing to do when you walk in through the front door.
Smart Fridges and Freezers
We’ve all done it. You go to the local supermarket to stock up on food for a couple of weeks, but when you get home and put it all in your fridge it’s so full that you can’t see (or remember) exactly what’s in there.
This leads to food going bad, ultimately costing you money. In fact, in the United States, approximately 40 percent of the food supply is wasted, equaling more than 20 pounds of food per person, per month.
The “LG Smart ThinQ Refrigerator” claims to have the answer. It has a touch screen which, in addition to serving as a potential family organization center, also serves as a way to monitor what’s in your fridge and when it expires.
Indeed, the food manager and the grocery apps work together seamlessly. The food manager keeps an inventory of the food items in your refrigerator, and when an item is either used or expired it’ll automatically send it to your grocery list app on your phone.
Apparently, the fridge will also use its list of contents to suggest recipes that are available to you. We’re not sure what it’d suggest if you’ve only got one egg, a jar of Nutella, and a bottle of wine, but we’ll give it the benefit of the doubt!
What Are Your Must-Have Appliances?
Have you tried any of the appliances we recommended? How did you find them?
If you don’t have any smart appliances in your home we’d love to know why? Is it the cost? Do you think they’re just gimmicks? Have you tried them and been underwhelmed?
Whatever your story, we’d like to hear it. You can leave your thoughts and ideas in the comments below.