Story originally published in Forbes by writer Amit Chowdhry
London-based Smarter is one of the fastest growing connected home companies in the U.K. Smarter gained global attention after being the first company to launch a Wi-Fi-enabled kettle known as the iKettle. Smarter’s latest products now include iKettle (3rd Gen), Smarter Coffee (2nd Gen) and FridgeCam. Smarter’s products are sold in over 3,000 stores across North America and Europe with retail partners like Best Buy, Amazon and Curry’s.
The Smarter app — which is available on iOS and Android — allows users to brew tea and coffee without having to be in the same room as the appliance. Smarter’s range can be programmed to automatically brew at certain times. The Smarter app can adjust the brew strength, temperature and quantity. And the geo-fencing mode combined with the Home Mode makes it possible to start brewing automatically during an evening commute.
Plus Smarter appliances play nicely with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant voice commands. And Smarter has applets available through IFTTT (If This Then That) so other smart home devices can be connected to the appliances. For example, Philips Hue Lights can be turned on when coffee starts brewing. The Smarter Coffee appliance could make a stronger coffee in the morning if your FitBit reports you had a bad night’s sleep (coming soon). And the Nest Cam could trigger the “Formula” mode in the iKettle so when a baby stirs for late night feedings, iKettle automatically boils and cools water and notifies you when it is ready for formula.
Once iKettle entered production, Smarter launched it on an online retailer called Firebox. And two months later, the iKettle became a best-selling product. After the iKettle hit the number one spot, it sold around £200,000 worth of iKettles in the first couple of weeks. “It’s all about having this technology work for you seamlessly in your life and we have a fantastic team at Smarter who have the expertise to continually push the boundaries to explore new creations,” added Lane.
The company’s latest product called the FridgeCam is the world’s first wireless refrigerator camera, which is set to connect millions of consumers to refrigerators. It can retrofit into any fridge so consumers all over the world can see the contents of their refrigerator from wherever they are through the Smarter app. The FridgeCam can be used for tracking food items and the Smarter app can suggest recipes based on the contents. Plus the FridgeCam can alert you when certain food items are about to expire. Through FridgeCam, Smarter signed a partnership deal with German refrigerator manufacturer Liebherr who is planning to sell the smart device with every Liebherr SmartDevice-enabled fridge across the world.
“We want to change the conversation and start thinking of how our appliances can support us efficiently, specifically better managing the kitchen on a daily basis. For us, the FridgeCam is the next step in that natural progression to connect the everyday kitchen. We believe it can be the key in giving supermarkets a fighting chance against those last mile delivery companies, with more consumers shopping little and often via express stores and online using Amazon or Walmart,” concluded Lane in the interview.
We can do this using crowd data we receive from each FridgeCam, by keeping track of and notifying us of expiry dates, stock ups, recipes and automated shopping via supermarkets. By doing so we are building one of the most powerful computer vision programs in the world to automatically track and detect our food. The goal is ambitious – but I believe we have the pieces now in place to make it a reality.”
Smarter now has over 100,000 customers around the world and the company sold over $12 million worth of connected technology products since it launched. If you are interested in Smarter’s products, then you can purchase the second-generation Smarter Coffee for $249.99 and the iKettle for $149.99 at Best Buy. The FridgeCam will retail for $149.99 and is scheduled to be launched in the U.K. this month followed by availability in the U.S. in early 2018.
These inserts were taken from original Forbes published article – Smarter CEO: How We Will Change Your Kitchen