The Latest Innovations In Kitchen Appliances And Smart Technology

The latest trends in kitchen appliances aim to transform the heart of the home into a well-appointed command center, where everything is easily controlled by a touch of a button or the sound of your voice. The newest crop of home enhancements are straight up out of the Jetsons. Except, instead of Rosie the robot maid rolling around to lend a helping hand, built-in artificial intelligence and smart technology is putting you in the driver’s seat. Here’s a look a 2020’s most ground-breaking appliances.

Samsung Family Hub

Food brings people together, can a refrigerator do the same? Samsung’s first-ever side-by-side Family Hub aims to do just that. Engineered to connect, its Family Board is a digital bulletin board where everyone can easily stick notes, photos or videos they want to share on display, and that is just the beginning.

In January, Samsung unveiled its latest innovations at the 2020 Kitchen and Bath Industry Show (KBIS) in Las Vegas. The annual convention, in conjunction with the National Kitchen and Bath Association (NKBA), showcases the latest in premiere industry products, trends and technologies.

Samsung’s new lineup of slide-in ranges that make cooking more convenient. (Photo courtesy of Samsung Electronics)

It was there, that Samsung debuted the newest version of the Family Hub refrigerator.
The latest model is designed not only to streamline communication, but maximize time in the kitchen. The View Inside feature, which allows users to peak inside the fridge anywhere, anytime, makes grocery shopping that much more organized. Plus, with the SmartThings app, Family Hub becomes the remote control for your smart home, letting you instantly connect, monitor and control all of your smart appliances.

Its technology is not limited to syncing with smart devices. Each model has a redesigned interior to fit more groceries. Plus, those groceries will stay fresher for longer because of its all-around cooling technology and multiple vents to keep food evenly cooled and fresh.

It’s not just smart, it looks good, too. Its modern form and premium built-in look, characterized by elegant flat doors, minimal dispenser and recessed handles, blend seamlessly with existing kitchen appliances and cabinetry. Another bonus: it comes with a fingerprint-resistant finish that’s easy to keep clean.

The Samsung Family Hub for 2020 will enable families to more easily share life’s important moments with one another and control more of the connected devices within their smart home. (Photos courtesy of Samsung Electronics)

During KBIS, Samsung also unveiled a new lineup of slide-in ranges that make cooking more convenient. Certain models of the slide-in ranges can be controlled with voice assistants, allowing you to bring out your full potential as a home chef.

Make the most of prep time by instructing the range to preheat the oven while you’re mixing ingredients for a meal. It will even begin to learn your cooking preferences. For example, if you frequently set your oven to a certain temperature to bake your family’s favorite cookies, it will suggest that temperature first when you preheat your oven.

The new ranges also come with air frying capabilities and can remotely monitor and adjust cooking times or temperatures from your smartphone, even when you’re in the family room instead of the kitchen.

GE Next Gen Kitchen Hub

The original GE Kitchen Hub, introduced last year, offered just about everything a tech savvy home chef could wish for in a smart appliance. Designed as hood range with a built-in smart display, the Kitchen Hub boasts cameras that could view, record and share your cooktop, recipe apps and more. The latest model, dubbed the GE Next Gen Kitchen Hub, takes it a step further with the addition of a built-in microwave and an additional third camera inside the oven that’s integrated into an artificial intelligence computer.

GE’s next gen Kitchen Hub allows the user a full-service kitchen experience. (Photos courtesy of GE Appliances)

Featuring a sizable and chic 27-inch smart touch screen and ventilation combo, the new Kitchen Hub can still easily fit in the space above the range. The Next Gen’s AI technology helps home chefs select recipes based on available ingredients detected by a camera, assists in detection of doneness of food items, raises or lowers oven temperature and notes any missing ingredients. The third in-oven camera, allows users to view their meals as it cooks.

The tablet-meets-microwave can also help minimize food waste. According to GE, American families waste 20 percent of the food they buy, equating to roughly $800 per year in waste. The AI powered computer vision helps people use the ingredients they have on hand to quickly create meal options. With features such as a built-in Google Assistant, owners can also create grocery lists and plan meals.

The Next Gen also offers multi-angle live video chats and connectivity to other smart home devices, like temperature control, lighting systems and cameras. If that wasn’t enough, you can also stream Netflix and Spotify from the display.

The next gen Kitchen Hub will be available in late 2020. AI powered computer vision cooking technology, accessible for all GE appliances with cameras, will also be available in late 2020.

The U by Moen Smart Faucet

In today’s smart homes, even the faucet is engineered to amaze. Winner of the 2020 KBIS Smart Home Technology award, The U by Moen Smart Faucet’s intuitive voice-activation technology is designed to streamline the most mundane kitchen tasks.

The U by Moen Smart Faucet offers convenience, precision and intuitive voice-activation technology. (Photos courtesy of Moen)

Its voice control allows users to start and stop water flow, as well as perform specific tasks on command through digital voice assistants like Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. For example, with just a few words, the faucet provides the perfect amount and temperature of water for preparing a baby bottle or fills a pot with exactly four quarts of hot water while you chop veggies for dinner. No more multitasking blunders, here.

Users are able to control the U by Moen Smart Faucet in multiple ways in addition to voice control. A Wave Sensor positioned at the front of the faucet turns water on or off with a simple hand movement while the handle on the side of the faucet offers manual operation, letting users adjust flow and temperature.

While it’s not uncommon for smart home appliances to have a modern aesthetic, the U by Moen is available in a range of finishes to suit consumers’ varying styles and budgets. Whether homeowners are designing a modern masterpiece or prefer to take a more traditional route, Moen has an option.

Cyndi Zaweski
Cyndi Zaweski is the former editor of Anton Media Group's special sections.

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