Food doesn’t care that much about the kind of building it lives in, as long as things are cold. You may have a refrigerator that’s a cardboard box with a big ice cube and a flapping condor, or one of the new smart fridges that look like the International Space Station.
In any case, it is not of immediate assistance if you return from work to find only condiments in your fridge. But a smart fridge can make you feel real stupid about it.
Smart refrigerators tend to offer automatic temperature regulation (I would just set mine to cold), integration with all your smart devices, and often the ability to peek inside the fridge through a camera or window—a particularly useful feature if you’re worried the milk and eggs are going to jump you and take your lunch money.
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Use the Samsung French Door Family Hub Refrigerator—wow, that’s a long name. Thankfully, it doesn’t have the ability to run away because it would take too long to call it.
Looking like a fridge wearing an eyepatch, this monolith features an integrated display where you can control all your smart devices, including the ability to check who’s at the front door if you have a compatible video doorbell. This would make your refrigerator the lord over all your devices. They will mutiny.
There’s even a built-in camera that lets you remotely see what’s in the fridge from your phone, in case you’re at the grocery store and want to check if you forgot something. You don’t know how many times this I used at the grocery store to show everyone how expensive my fridge was? It’s a lot. I would be banned from the store.
The Bosch 800 Series Refrigerator (that’s more like it) emits an alert if the door is open so the residents don’t suffer a slow death, and if you tap on the LG InstaView Refrigerator twice, you can see inside and watch your food’s secret fight club.
What is Smart?
If you’re not sure whether you need a smart refrigerator, it’s worth asking yourself an important question: Do I already own a refrigerator that works? You don’t need a smart fridge if your refrigerator keeps the cold out (mine warms up first and then I eat it).
Even if you’re in the market for a new fridge, a smart fridge is probably not something you need. These fridges can cost thousands more than a regular, good-quality refrigerator. These fridges are useful in helping with grocery shopping as well as recipes. Kids might enjoy features such a hub for family entertainment that displays and streams videos and notes.
Is a smart fridge more useful than one with cute drawings and a calendar? But not really.
More to the point, I already spend far too much time thinking about what’s in the fridge or gazing inside mindlessly as if I’m going to find the snack to end all snacks. A cool smart fridge that causes me to spend even more time around it is an enabler I don’t need in my life.
Now, if they make a smart fridge that says passive-aggressive things like, “Dude, it’s three in the morning,” then I’d be all in. If they appeal to you, and you can manage to have a smart refrigerator in your home, then you should check them out.