Samsung’s New Fridge Can Order Fresh Direct Groceries from its Humongous Touchscreen
By Dieter Bohn
Samsung is really, really eager for you to know about its new smart refrigerator with a ridiculously large touchscreen integrated right into the door. It put up posters early, itposted images early, and finally it even put up some PR early. But now it’s officially official, and despite the fact that it looks nothing so much like a huge Android tablet super-glued onto a fridge, it’s actually one of the best implementations of a smart fridge we’ve seen.
The headline feature is a shopping app that’s been created by MasterCard. It lets you buy groceries right from the door, and the intelligent part is that it can combine carts from multiple stores. At launch, you can order from FreshDirect and ShopRite, and MasterCard says that more stores will be added throughout 2016 (you can use any credit card to pay, of course). MasterCard also tells me that if you have kids, no worries, when they load up the cart with Go-Gurt you will still be able to approve the cart before it goes through.
IT’S RIDICULOUS, BUT IT’S ALSO KIND OF GREAT
The 21.5 screen uses Tizen and is just the most prominent nerdy feature on this nerdy fridge. It also has three cameras inside that take an image every time the door closes, and you can then check your levels of milk from a companion Android or iOS smartphone app. The fridge also has a built-in speaker for playing music (and a Pandora app built-in to find it), and it has Bluetooth if you want to play it off of other speakers inside your house. The screen can also mirror whatever happens to be playing on a Samsung Smart TV.
It also does the usual stuff you’d expect from a smart fridge (assuming you ever think about such things): It can display shared calendars, photos, weather, YouTube videos, and notes for the family — most of which can be controlled from the smartphone app. It has advanced humidity and temperature sensors, a “FlexZone” that can work either as a fridge or a freezer, and it will, of course, display recipes.
What we don’t know yet is what this Tizen interface will actually look like and how it all will work. It’s easy to mock Tizen for being secondary to Android, but Samsung has been finding ways to make it much better than you’d expect on its Gear S2 smartwatch and Smart TVs. That’s the good news, the bad news is that our best in action of how the interface works comes from this row of buttons that seems like it would fit better in 2012 than 2016:
We’ll find out precisely what all those buttons do when we get a chance to check the fridge out on the show floor later this week. The Family Hub fridge should be available in the US this May, but no pricing has been announced.
Article was originally posted here