Smart phones, smart TVs, smart everything! With all our electronics slowly getting smarter over the last few years, it was only a matter of time until our home appliances made their way to the internet of things. We’ve seen smart water bottles, smart microwaves, and now, even smart refrigerators slowly making their way into the mainstream.
Read also: What is the Internet of Things?
At least for now, there are actually only a few smart fridges actively available on the market, but how do they differ exactly? Let’s take a look.
Samsung Family Hub
This refrigerator is at the top of our list for a reason. There are so many features available in this fridge that you might not know what to do with them all, but fortunately Samsung seems to have stayed relatively mindful with making these features useful.
The Samsung Family hub allows you to look inside from anywhere with your phone, display recipes on the front of the fridge, and even order groceries from a built-in app. It’s meant to be a all-in one hub for your kitchen, and it does this very well. The calendar and notes app can help you keep track of what you need and your events for the day, while the photos displayed by your fridge help bring joy to you any time you’re in the kitchen.
With TV and music playback built right in, there’s little this refrigerator can’t do. All these features aren’t cheap however, and will cost you a pretty penny for the luxury. The family hub starts at $2,500.00 for the base model and moves upwards of $5,500 for the top model. Even so, it’s one of the best options available on the market, so if you’re looking for the best of the best, there’s no denying that you should give the Samsung family hub a look.
LG introduced the Instaview at CES 2017, and they’re looking to make checking your food as effortless as possible. The primary feature included in the Instaview is the ability to knock on the refrigerator in order to check on your food, allowing you to see what’s inside without even opening the fridge.
LG also introduced a feature they call “Door-in-Door”, which allows you to grab the important things from the door of your fridge without opening the main door. LG says this helps keep the cold air inside the fridge to keep your food fresh for a longer period of time. The fridge is also super large capacity, so you should be able to fit in much more than you would previously.
While these refrigerators aren’t exactly cheap, they are on average a decent amount more affordable than options from Samsung. Most of these options will cost you around 4 grand, but some of the larger capacities cost more than double that.
GE Wi-Fi Connect Refrigerators
While GE has not built their refrigerators to be smart to the same extent as Samsung or LG, their ‘Wi-Fi Connect’ refrigerator series do have the ability to do quite a lot of smart actions.
The heft of these refrigerators’ abilities are lumped into the GE Wi-Fi Connect smartphone app. Sure, it doesn’t have a giant touchscreen that allows you to see your calendar or leave sticky notes, but you are able to remotely control a number of features from the convenience of your mobile device. The unit also has the ability to send you alerts in case you left the door open or the filter needs to be replaced.
These refrigerators allow you to set heat schedules for your morning coffee, turn the ice maker on and off, and give you status updates about your food freshness and ice levels. Many of the features here are based around alerting you of major changes and toggling small things like ice and water heat. Sure, it doesn’t have anything like a giant touch-enabled tablet that you can draw on, but these also save you a pretty penny if your refrigerator’s smarts isn’t incredibly important for you to spend money on. That said, these are GE, and the quality adds an extra bump to the price point.
You can pick up one of these refrigerators in various colors for $3199-3399.
Are there any refrigerators you think we missed? There are sure to be more and more popping up on the market all the time, so be sure to stay tuned here for all the best options.