This Futuristic Fridge Comes To You When You Call It
No more squabbling over who has to get up to fetch the next round of drinks!
After a long day, do you ever flop down on the couch only to realize you should have grabbed a drink or a snack, but even the short walk to the fridge seems like an insurmountable task? If only you could train your dog to fetch a cold beer or a glass of wine for you. Well, a new product from Panasonic could eliminate that after-work dilemma, and no, it doesn’t involve Fido. Instead, the company has unveiled the concept for a product called Ku, a voice-activated refrigerator that has the ability to come to you when called.
If you’re wondering how the heck a fridge can move on its own, let alone know where to go, Ku uses LIDAR (light detection and ranging, a remote sensing method that’s also used in Google’s self-driving car) along with depth sensors to navigate your home. While it’s currently in the prototype stage, Panasonic says it could be available to consumers in five to six years.
via @danielwcooper @engadget – Panasonic's fridge of the future comes when you call it! http://go.redirectingat.com/?id=88890X1542043&url=https%3A%2F%2Ft.co%2F6bDJujd8F2 #IFA2017 pic.twitter.com/vYB5fpocg6
— Panasonic Corp. (@panasonic) September 7, 2017
In addition to responding to simple voice commands like, “Come to the dining table, Ku,” or “Go to the living room,” the product has the ability to avoid any obstacles in its path, such as furniture or even kids and pets.
‘The fridge can see things up to 15 centimetres (6 inches) ahead of it,” a Panasonic spokesperson told the Daily Mail Online.
Pansonic debuted the nifty contraption at the IFA Conference in Berlin, a leading international trade show for consumer electronics and home appliances. While the company says the refrigerator was developed with the elderly and people with disabilities in mind, it also seems perfect for those of us who can’t be bothered to leave the La-Z-Boy for another beer in the middle of the game. Check out this short video of the fridge in action.
— Charlene Cristobal (@charleneWCTV) September 6, 2017
Like a regular fridge, you can stock Ku with all your favorite foods and beverages, but it also has another added feature that sets it apart from your everyday refrigerator: You can fill the fridge with dirty dishes, and it will then transport them to the dishwasher for cleaning. What will they think of next?!