Android. It’s been around for more than five years, and there’s nothing more natural than seeing it on a smartphone or a tablet. But would you expect to see it in your fridge? Not so much. And yet, if you really look (as we just did), you’ll find Android installed on all sorts of weird devices. Prepare to be perplexed.
You heard right. The Dacor Discovery IQ [Broken Link Removed] is an oven running Android, and it’s not even that new (although it was updated this last CES). According to Dacor’s website, the oven is powered by a Samsung 1 GHz processor and 512 MB DDR2 RAM, has a Wi-Fi connection, a 7-inch LCD touch panel, and stereo speakers. Perfect for that cooking music you can’t do without, I guess. It also lets you control the oven remotely using the Dacor app and your phone (iOS is supported too!).
The Dacor Discovery IQ comes in three different models, the most affordable of which will still cost you $4500. The most expensive one is no less than $12,000. Phew.
Got $3500 to spare? You too can have Android inside your fridge. This Samsung fridge has four doors, with an 8-inch LCD display built into one of them. Not only can you use it to display photos, write notes, find recipes and access your calendar, it also comes with “special apps made for your refrigerator”. I’m assuming this means stuff like custom shopping lists and inventory organizers. At least I hope that’s what it means.
The fridge also has a Wi-Fi connection, so you can even get weather updates right on your fridge. Perfect for when you’re getting that glass of water in the morning.
Android-Based Gaming Consoles
Android-based gaming consoles are not that new anymore, and therefore they might not seem that weird. But when you think about it, it’s a pretty unusual place to find Android. The most famous Android consoles are the OUYA and GameStick, and both are pretty affordable ($99.99 and $79.99, respectively). Android-based consoles are portable and cheap, but that doesn’t mean they’re any good.
If you’re on the fence, you should read our overview of these consoles and whether they’re worth it or not. Regardless, these consoles are not going anywhere, and we’ll probably see more of them in the future. Unlike Android-powered ovens, this is probably here to stay.
Android In Cars
You’ve probably heard of Google’s announcement in this year’s CES about Android and cars. In short, Google wants to bring Android-powered dashboards to lots of cars, pretty soon. But this is not some imaginary future. Android-powered in-car entertainment systems already exist. They’re made by Ca-Fi, and you can install one in your own car, or find a car that already has one installed.
What can you do with it? Stuff like hand-free calls, navigation, listening to music, and even downloading regular Android apps. Will this make driving more or less safe? I’m not exactly sure, but it does seem like something we’ll see a lot more of in the near future.
Image credit: AndroidandMe on YouTube
Being the best example of weird Android usage of the lot, I was sad to discover you can’t actually buy this washer/dryer yet. In fact, I couldn’t find out whether it will ever be available at all. This Touch Revolution washer/dryer was presented at CES several years ago, and I can only hope it’s still being worked on, as it’s brilliant.
The Android-based touch panel gets rid of all washing-machine question marks. Tell it the kind of fabric you’re washing or the kind of stain you’re trying to remove, and it automatically inputs all the right settings for you. It can send you a text message when it’s done washing, and in general, it’s just much better than all those inexplicable symbols and buttons no one ever knows how to use.
Touch Revolution doesn’t actually make the washer itself, only the Android-powered control system (it also makes a similar product for microwaves), so it’s now up to third-party companies to integrate it with their appliances. I did manage to find a washing machine made by Samsung which seems to incorporate Android, but the “learn more” link leads to a non-existing page.
If you’re curious, watch this demo video to find out more:
Android Coffee Machine
This Zipwhip-powered coffee machine is probably the coolest use of Android I’ve ever seen. While you can’t exactly buy this awesome thing for your home or office, it definitely exists in real life.
Zipwhip is a text-messaging company, and is one of many ways to send out free SMS messages. But who needs plain old text messages when you can text your coffee machine to make you a cup of coffee?
Another Android-powered coffee machine is this design concept by In-oh Yoo & Bong-yup Song. It combines coffee, music and Android to create what could be an interesting entertainment experience. The coffee capsules come with QR codes which the machine reads, and plays fitting music accordingly. It can also charge your phone and communicate with it to recognize you and save your coffee preferences. Interesting.
Android Is Everywhere!
To be honest, these are not the only places where you can find Android (other than tablets and phones). Android is now on cameras such as the Samsung Galaxy Camera (our review), the Nikon CoolPix S800c, and others. It’s also on Android computer sticks and Android TV sticks which are getting increasingly popular.
In short, Android is slowly taking over the world. Or, wait, maybe it’s actually Google.
What’s the weirdest usage of Android you’ve ever seen?
Image Credits: williamskitchenbath Via Flickr