Cooking up the connected kitchen

By , ITworld |  IT Management

Some vendors are thinking on a larger scale – and selling equipment that is perhaps a harbinger of the future connected kitchen. If you're ready to spend $7,499 for a double-wall oven (and yes, some of us are; I don't collect those cookbooks just for show), you might consider Dacor's Discovery IQ Controller, expected to ship in the summer of 2013. It promises home chefs "the latest technological advances for the kitchen," and runs on the Android OS, powered by a Samsung 1GHZ Processor and 512MB DDR2 RAM.

Imagine connecting with your oven from your smartphone to adjust the roast's cooking time. When dinner is ready to serve, the oven can notify the chef via text message or push notification, not to mention nag your family on their mobile devices to call them to dinner. Home chefs can access the Dacor Discovery IQ Cooking Application and Guide, suggests Dacor, while simultaneously downloading other popular applications through the Google Play Store, researching new recipes, or viewing cooking video demonstrations wirelessly through a home Wi-Fi network.

And, of course, should the wall oven encounter a problem or require maintenance, IQ will notify the owner with an error message and send an automated report to Dacor for troubleshooting.

Okay, that oven didn't generate an initial response of "How dumb." I proceeded directly to "I want that."

Back burner
As I said earlier, the kitchen equipment manufacturers are thinking a lot about where the technology could head, and what problems we actually want to solve. Some showed a taste of what they might produce in a few concept demonstrations, while others, such as Bosch, spent more time asking for input than suggesting ideas.

Haier, for instance, showcased a cordless blender, in which electricity is transmitted using coupling technology, allowing the blender to remotely receive energy without any wires. The transmitter (which provides the electricity) is placed underneath the kitchen worktop. Energy is transferred to the mixer through the worktop, "making a wireless kitchen possible," said the promotional literature.

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