One of the problems with so much of the technology that is currently being sold is that it does not in fact solve any problems people actually care about. Tech companies are pushing smart watches because tech companies need a new profit center, not because people are screaming for them. VR is the future because manufacturers need to ship hardware to stay in business, etc. I generally put smart kitchen devices into this category. When what I have dies in 15 years I’ll see whats on the market, but otherwise what I have is fine. Smart Coffee machines though may be one of the few places I see an actual need.
In the modern world people have become shockingly particular about things like coffee. They want exactly what they want. The grind should be specific, the strength should be able to be lab verified, and generally people have become a pain in this area. I see this a lot when I go to places where there are a lot of guests. LITERALLY this summer I was at a persons house with FIVE coffee makers just to make sure everyone could have the brew they preferred. To be clear this may be a half idiotic problem of the “first world” kind, but it is a real one. Smart Coffee Machines could alleviate the problem.
The Smarter Coffee Machine allows you to connect to it using a smartphone app. From there you are able to choose a number of options. You can say how many cups of coffee you want brewed. You can say the grind of the coffee because you load whole beans and the grinder is built in. You can also say how strong you want the coffee to be. Kueregs were supposed to be the answer to allowing everyone to have the brew they preferred, but realistically you generally end up with a single serve of coffee that is either to light or dark for taste. With a Smart Coffee Machine you can really figure out what you like, and then keep getting a consistent brew.
Coffee being as much a drug, as a beverage also fits the niche of being something that people want the dose of delivered at particular times. So you want your coffee 5 minutes after you wake up, or ready when you walk into the office. Since the Smart Coffee Machine is controlled by the smartphone you can set triggers for when actions should happen even using IFTT. So when you get within 2 miles of your office it will automatically start, or when you start moving in the morning it will trigger. It also apparently now works with Alexa if you want to voice control it. Coffee really is a place where I think smart kitchens make sense.
In office environments a ton of coffee is wasted when people do not drink it. Employees laugh at the thought, but each packet of coffee may cost the company $.50. If you have a 1000 employees the coffee waste can really add to be something massive. Kueregs were supposed to solve this, but each pod comes in at $.10-$.25 which again really starts to add up. If a company can simply buy whole beans, and then people can brew fresh coffee as needed that improves morale, and the bottom line. With the ever present snow flake mentality that is being promoted in the tech world allowing employees to brew to their specific specifications will coddle their egos if that’s what the company is looking for.
I’m genuinely excited about the Smart Coffee Machine idea, and more generally about being able to control food robots in order to consume based on user specifications. My wife has health issues and so likes to drink a 20 oz Americano with only one shot of espresso, where I on the other hand like my fresh brewed Starbucks. This kind of automation solves a trivial, but real problem for me.
As to the Smarter machine in particular..? I’d suggest you go watch some reviews. None of the reviewers seemed overly kind about this specific product. Although the beans are ground individually they just get dumped into a regular gold filter in the machine. This means you have to manually dump old coffee grounds between brews or they all just pile up in the filter which kinda defeats the whole point of custom grind. There seem to be other minor issues I don’t want to go into since I haven;t tested a machine myself, but on the whole I LOVE the IDEA, but this particular implementation may be off the mark.
Take a look at it here: https://smarter.am/coffee/#