Ever have the feeling after watching a scary movie that something in your house is watching you? Well, now you can have the peace of mind of knowing that, in fact, lots of things are watching you—and listening, too. Those things? Your “smart” home appliances.
As the age of artificial intelligence dawns, the devices that help us out around the home are the first to undergo changes testing the limits of the new technology. However, these breakthroughs are far from limited to personal assistants like Amazon’s Alexa—today, they can be found in just about every corner of the home, from the bedroom to the kitchen. And while it may be some time before all of these devices become ubiquitous, sooner or later, these innovative electronics will be as commonplace as your average TV.
So, to give you a leg up on what’s coming down the pipeline, we’ve compiled a list of the most advanced home appliances out there. Don’t feel bad if their skills far outweigh your own homemaking abilities—after all, that’s what they were designed to do. And if you’d rather read about some decidedly inferior products, here are the 30 Home Appliances So Bad They’re Hilarious.
June Intelligent Oven
$599; buy now at June
Have you ever wished others could just read your mind and do what you wanted without you explaining it to them? While truly omniscient electronics may be a bit farfetched, the June Intelligent Oven is about as close as we’re likely to get.
In addition to being seven appliances in one, the June automatically detects what food is placed inside of it, and cooks it accordingly, no human input required. Still don’t trust it? You can use June’s Wi-Fi connectivity to watch live video of your meal being cooked, and even get sent a notification when it’s done. How crazy is that?! And for more great tech you can buy now, don’t miss the 10 Tech Items You Never Knew You Needed.
Samsung Family Hub Refrigerator
From $3,052; buy now at Samsung
Fifty years ago, it was virtually mind-blowing that appliances existed that could keep things cold all year round. Oh, how far we’ve come.
While the Samsung Family Hub refrigerator does keep things mighty cold, that’s about the least of its abilities; in keeping with its name, it’s less a one-function appliance than it is a central data hub for the family. Among other things, the refrigerator keeps track of its interiors to notify when food is expired or not sufficiently healthy, allows live-streaming of its insides via a cell phone to double-check with your grocery list, streams music or TV on its front panel, keeps track of the whole family’s schedules, and sends reminders accordingly. It also asks daily trivia, orders delivery, responds to voice commands, and, most conventionally, makes over eight pounds of ice a day.
Something tells us that if this refrigerator were indeed “running,” it’d be rather hard to catch.
Behmor Smart Coffee Maker
$169.99; buy now at Amazon
The Behmor Temperature Control Coffee Maker is like having a little barista in your house at all times. In addition to allowing finely customized temperatures and brewing options, the Behmor will automatically order more coffee grounds when you run out, as well as responding to voice options. Not in earshot? The Behmor can also be turned on remotely through an app, making sure a strong cup of coffee is brewed and waiting for you right when you arrive home. Yes, we’ll be adding the Behmor soon to the 15 Best Coffee Makers on the Planet.
Furbo Dog Camera
$199.99 buy now at Furbo
The Furbo Dog Camera is designed to make leaving your dog at home a little less painful for the both of you. With a built-in camera, the Furbo allows you to watch your dog from away, while sending notifications when your dog does specific things—for example, when they take a “dog selfie.”
In addition, the Furbo can play games with your dog, and shoots out treats on command. Finally, it has a two-way intercom system which not only allows you to “speak” to your furry friend, but will automatically send a text if the dog begins barking. Staying away overnight? Have no fear: the camera also has a built-in night vision. Cesar Millan better watch his back!
$129.95; buy now at SmartPlate
Ever tried to keep track of everything you’ve eaten for a week? While a healthy exercise in self-awareness, it’s also a cumbersome task which eats away at free time while making meals much less fun. With the Smart Plate, however, keeping track just got a whole lot easier.
The Smart Plate, along with its app, can identify the food placed upon it, and instantly record both its nutrients and its calorie content. It will then keep track of your foods—providing detailed graphs of trends—for up to a year. Mindfulness, it seems, has never been so mindless.
Drop Scale Connected Kitchen Scale
$79.95; buy now at Amazon
For the mathematically challenged, the hardest part of cooking is properly dividing the amounts called for in the original recipe to make up for a larger or smaller serving size. With the Drop Scale, however, this dubious refresher course in fractions is replaced by the certainty of using a calculator.
The scale is Wi-Fi enabled, and users, before employing it, input whatever recipe they are following. Afterward, the scale’s app will keep track of the various ingredients placed upon it, telling the user to “add more tomatoes” or cautioning them against leaving out an essential ingredient. Fortunately, the process is also hands-free, so your phone needn’t get covered in raw meat just to move to the next step in the recipe. In addition, the app is constantly updated with new recipes from the web, making meal discovery—along with meal creation—a breeze.
$149.99; buy now at GeniCan
Imagine if every time you threw something away because it was empty, a refill automatically arrived on your doorstep. If you get the GeniCan, this dream can become a reality.
This nifty little scanner is placed atop a garbage can and, after it learns which items it should keep track of, the device automatically orders a refill shipment as soon as it detects empty packaging being thrown into the trash. Want more of something before it runs out? The GeniCan also responds to voice, and is more than happy to add your culinary whims to the grocery list.
$239.64; buy now at Amazon
Thought your dad’s pancake designs were nifty? He’s got nothing on Pancake Bot, the world’s first food printer to draw with pancake batter. Simply upload an image to the machine’s software on your computer, hit “go,” and you’ve got pancakes ready-made in the most complex designs you could imagine. Some inventive designs you can wow your brunch guests with include a rose, an astronaut, and even the Eiffel Tower.
Perfect Drink PRO Smart Scale
$99.99; buy now on Amazon
A scale connected over Wi-Fi with any of your mobile devices, the Perfect Drink is preloaded with over 400 cocktails that it knows how to make. Simply place a cup atop the scale, choose your drink, and start pouring. As you reach the limit that the cocktail calls for, the scale will “bing” to let you know you’ve poured the correct amount. Working with a limited cabinet? Simply enter the ingredients you have and the scale will recommend a drink you can make.
Scotts Gro Water Sensor
$99.97; buy now at Home Depot
Wouldn’t gardening be so much easier if the plants could simply tell us when they needed water? Well, with the Scotts Gro Water Sensor, now they can.
Simply place the monitor in the soil of your favorite plant, choose from the catalog of over 50,000 plants that the device knows, and the monitor will send alerts directly to your phone when your little green buddy needs water or nutrients. One plant looking strong while the other wilts? The monitor is small and easily portable, great for switching among the garden’s inhabitants to ensure each gets the proper care. Just be sure you know the all of the Plants You Should Never Bring Inside Your Home.
Anova Culinary Sous Vide Precision Cooker
From $129; buy now at Amazon
When it comes to cooking methods, sous vide is super hot right now. However, while you may see it popping up on menus across the world, most people don’t know how to prepare their favorite dishes via sous vide themselves. Fortunately for the amateur chef, the Anova Culinary Sous Vide Precision Cooker knows exactly what it’s doing.
Simply place your plastic-bag-enclosed food item into boiling water, slip in the Precision Cooker, and let it do its work. The device connects over Bluetooth to your mobile device, allowing the user to input one of over 1,000 recipes for the Cooker to follow. The Cooker will then circulate the food appropriately, monitoring its temperature, and will send you a notification when it’s ready.
Crock-Pot Wemo Smart Wi-Fi Enabled Slow Cooker
$146.52; buy now on Amazon
The Crock-Pot Wemo Smart Wi-Fi Enabled Slow Cooker has a life of its own. By connecting over Wi-Fi to your mobile device, the pot will essentially handle all your cooking, hands-free, and deliver a meal right on time. Running late? Use your phone to push back the cooking schedule. Leaving work early? Start the cooking ASAP so you don’t spend a second too long being hungry. Best of all, the Crock Pot’s still smart enough to know its own limits: to go fully manual, simply turn off the Wi-Fi.
WINBOT 830 Robotic Window Cleaner
$149.99; buy now on Amazon
The WINBOT Robotic Window Cleaner is exactly that: a robotic window cleaner. While that may sound anticlimactic, watching it in action is sure to make you realize how much we take window cleaning for granted. Whether frosted glass, colored glass, or plain old windows of any shape and size, the WINBOT locks on, and cleans in one of two patterns to ensure that not a streak is left, all the while maintaining a vertical orientation without falling off the wall. It’s almost like Spider-Man the way it magically clings to windows—albeit a bit more useful than the webbed one within the confines of your home.
Eufy RoboVac 11 Self-Charging Robotic Vacuum
$229.99; buy now on Amazon
Robotic vacuums are nothing new, though the novelty may never fade. The Eufy RoboVac 11, however, picks up where other vacuums have left off. In addition to all the expected upgrades—faster, stronger, quieter—the RoboVac has one upgrade which is both extremely helpful while also hinting at the machine’s possible sentience. When the RoboVac’s battery gets low, it automatically send itself back to its charging cradle, remaining there until it regains full strength. In a sense, once you put the RoboVac in action, it can lead a life of its own.
Image via Withings
Withings Sleep Tracking Mat
$99.95; buy now at Withings
In olden times, you had to go to a hospital overnight to find out detailed information about your sleep patterns. With the Sleep Tracking Mat by Withings, however, you’ll get a full report every time you hit the hay. A sleek, unnoticeable mat placed underneath a pillow, the Tracking Mat can tell what stage of sleep you are in, how deep that sleep is, your heart rate, and even monitor any interruptions during the night, while providing a detailed recap the morning after.
In response, it provides feedback on how to ensure a restful sleep going forward. It’s got friends, too: the mat can connect to your home’s appliances, dimming the lights and adjusting the thermostat for ideal conditions when going to sleep and when waking up.
iGrill2 Wireless Bluetooth Barbecue Meat Thermometer
$119.99; buy now on Amazon
Ever tried to grill four different things at once, only to burn half of them, while leaving the other half undercooked? With the iGrill2 meat thermometer, these horror stories are sure to become a thing of the past.
Four wireless thermometers connected by bluetooth to a portable hub, the iGrill2 simultaneously keeps track of all your separate items being grilled, and will alert you with precision when any one of your meats are ready to eat. As for remembering who ordered what, and who needed the gluten-free bun, you’re on your own.
iRobot Braava Mopping Robot
$259.99; buy now on Amazon
The iRobot Braava Mopping Robot does for mops what the Roomba did for vacuums, while simultaneously avoiding all the pitfalls such a move could bring. Replete with an army of sensors, the Braava will mop your entire home automatically—wood, stone, tile, linoleum—while refraining from spraying its jets on walls, furniture, or carpeting.
Additionally, the Braava tempers its stream depending upon the cleaning pad one attaches underneath it, making sure to provide the right amount of cleaning solution for every surface. Most impressively, it somehow even knows how to clean around toilets effectively, something humans are still working on.
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