What will the kitchen of the future look like? What will it do? How will it benefit us?
Expert Michael Wolf, founder of the annual Smart Kitchen Summit and publisher of The Spoon newsletter made a handful of smart kitchen predictions for the next 10 years and offered his observations during a recent Ayla webinar. Here are a few:
- We'll be buying most of our food through apps
- We'll cook with more intelligent devices
- We’ll see a digitization of food, i.e. the Internet of Food
- Food subscriptions will subsidize kitchen appliances
- Artificial Intelligence will help drive our food decisions
- Robotics and automation will augment human capabilities
- Sharing a meal with others -- virtually -- will become common
- Consumers will expect software-driven features and improvements
- Businesses that provide value will be able to leverage consumer connectivity
The Smart, Connected Kitchen is Inevitable
Market growth numbers from data firm Statistica point to a growing installed base of smart appliances, Wolf said. From $21 billion in 2018, the market will be up as high as $48 billion by 2023.
Among the driving trends for smart kitchens that Wolf cited were:
- The integration of grocery and commerce
- Shoppable recipes from startups such as Whisk, Fexy, Mixx, and Chicory
- Proactive programmatic purchasing, such as automatic replenishment
Wolf said that the consumers will be attracted to connected smart kitchen appliances not only for the better cooking and dining, but also because they will increase home safety and reduce waste. He offered several use cases:
Fire prevention: Kitchen cooking equipment of the future will monitor itself for food forgotten on a stove, overheating, smoke and malfunction. These are important benefits, as kitchen fires account for almost half of all house fires.
Less cross-contamination: Voice control via smart speakers such as Alexa or Google Home can be a valuable tool when the cook’s hands are covered with a raw egg or other substance that could introduce a food-borne illness.
Reducing food waste: About 40% of food that is currently grown and prepared is wasted. But smart kitchen devices will monitor a family’s consumption and create a grocery list that encourages a shopper to purchase “just enough.”
The 'Netflix' of the Kitchen
The current crop of manufacturers making smart kitchen appliances are already well known to most consumers and include Haier Group (which includes GE Appliances), LG Electronics, Bosch, Samsung Electronics, and Whirlpool Corporation.
Industry experts such as Wolf wonder whether a new technology or company might emerge to dominate in the kitchen, in much the same way Netflix has changed living room entertainment since the late 1990s. Given that the kitchen is the heart of the home, such a game-changing company could revolutionize our lives in an even more important and fundamental way.
Appliance manufacturers and innovators who’d like more inspiration can listen to a recording of Wolf in our webinar, “IoT-led Business Transformation in the Home Appliance Market.”
To find out how to transform regular kitchen appliances into smart appliances, contact Ayla for a free consultation on using our IoT platform services.