Coming: household gadgets with a little extra intelligence to help save on bills.
From Vishnu Anand, recently in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
February 8 2016: This is the Chinese Year of the Monkey. Going by tech innovations that are set to touch us in the coming months, it seems like homo sapiens are set to become even smarter than simians, thanks to devices that do most of the thinking on behalf of humans. Many of these devices have been researched, conceptualized and created in India, for the world -- and any day now, we will witness a dramatic change in the way we use historically mundane household devices, and get the best out of them.
At Samsung Forum, its annual technology showcase, the Korean electronics and tech giant, extended a smart handshake to India, and announced a slew of smart home electronics devices., By harnessing both R&D and manufacturing within India, Samsung promises to add some panache to each of its products, with specifically created features to cater to Indian conditions.
One of the first devices that Samsung is bringing to India is a unique convertible 5-in-1 refrigerator. This twin cooling fridge provides us the flexibility to choose the cooling magnitude in different zones of the fridge, along with 5 presets for typical use cases. Besides the regular mode, the fridge offers an 'extra shopping' mode where your freezer unit can also be converted into a fridge unit until you free up space in the main unit. The 'seasonal mode' allows you to keep just the fridge unit on, ideally for winters, while the 'vacation mode' lets you switch off the fridge unit and keeps just the freezer unit on. Finally, the 'home alone' mode switches off the main unit and lets you use the freezer as a fridge.
Across all the four new modes, Samsung promises energy savings of 58%, 60%, 46% and 74% respectively, compared to the regular mode. The 5-in-1 convertible refrigerator also incorporates a twin cooling system that has separate air flows for the cooling and the freezer units, eliminating odour interferences. Samsung has also launched India's first smart inverter series of refrigerators that can work even on a home UPS.
Tshirt. check. Jeans check
Imagine how many times you have filled up an entire load of laundry in your washing machine, only to realize 10 minutes later that a stray sock or a hanky has been left behind. Looks like too many of us do it often enough for Samsung to specially curate a product line for us, with a separate door -- a smaller one -- to put in stray pieces of clothing and still make them part of the washing cycle. The AddWash front loading washing machines also allow you to add extra detergent or softeners even in the middle of the wash cycle. Well, here's one innovation that is smart -- by allowing you to be less smart and more forgetful!
This one is right up the alley for Indian summers. Samsung has launched a range of split air conditioners that come with a built-in voltage stabilizer -- something that Indians can appreciate. The devices can handle voltage fluctuations of between 146V to 290V without needing you to plug in an external stabilizer. Also, with its proprietary DuraFin technology, these AC units are corrosion resistant and provide up to 68% power efficiency. Here's to cool air on a cool budget!
Oven+Microwave+Air fryer. All in one.
The new Samsung Smart Oven features an interesting innovation called HotBlast, that transmits hot air upwards through 52 equally distributed air holes inside the microwave, cutting cooking time by half. An additional India-only feature called Indian Combo allows you to cook an entire meal, including dairy products in one go, with preset options; Grill, Fry, Tandoor, Bake, Steam and Curd. For the calorie conscious, the new Samsung SmartOven comes with a SlimFry feature which doubles up your microwave as an air fryer, and lets you cook with 80% less oil. The device also ensures that the food is crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. Wannabe master chefs, do take note!
Samsung, in the days to follow, will ensure that each of these devices talk and interact with each other. Since most of these devices run on Tizen, Samsung's own operating system, it is fairly easy to make them talk to each other. With,12,000 desi R&D specialists, Samsung's Make For India mantra, is all set to bring cutting edge technology to everyday devices. Eventually all of them will work collaboratively allowing you to control them from your mobile device. Mean while each of them has been 'smartened up', to work best in everyday Indian conditions. Cheers to that!