Written by IEEE | January 8, 2017 | Updated: March 31, 2017
Technology has changed the way people approach home renovation. Cabinets and countertops are taking a backseat to connected technologies that range from washers and dryers, dishwashers and ovens, to tables, refrigerators and stoves.
At CES 2017, major appliance manufacturers like LG, Samsung and Bosch have each built interactive experiences to showcase how although things may not be changing in form, appliance functionality is pivoting toward more connectivity and collaboration for the best possible experience.
While many of the products tout impressive concepts bells and whistles, there are three major trends worth keeping an eye on.
- Smart Refrigerators: in 2016, Samsung made a splash with its Family Hub refrigerator, but this year, they’re not the only ones dabbling in kitchen connectivity. The idea of a smarter refrigerator has been embraced by most manufacturers, with different features that range from in-fridge monitoring (food inventory, expiration date alerts, climate control, etc.), recipe discovery, list-making, family bulletin boards, and even grocery shopping.
- Robots at Home: Robots of all shapes, sizes and functions have been roaming the showroom floor at CES this year, with many solutions aimed at improving life at home. While some robots have niche applications for specific demographics like children or the elderly, home appliance manufacturers are introducing robots and AI (many are integrated with Amazon’s Alexa) into the home for cleaning solutions, climate control, and home-scale hubs that integrate with connected appliances in the kitchen.
- Multi-Tasking Tech: Washers and dryers might not strike you as exciting, but some of the latest concepts are engineered to make the process more efficient, handling multiple loads in less time. In addition to helping churn out clean clothes more quickly, many of the machines are connected to central hubs, so users can monitor the cycle progress.