Smart home appliances keep your life on track

Aug. 29, 2016

The future is now when it comes to smart appliances. From smart thermostats to smart ovens, appliances and home gadgets are making it easier to take control of our lives, and free ourselves from watching appliances operate.

Now the load of laundry or roast in the oven can let you know when it's done.


The refrigerator has long been the center of family life, with a notepad or a chalkboard for grocery lists and family communication.

Samsung is bringing the refrigerator into the Internet age with the Samsung Family Hub™ Refrigerator that uses technology to still serve as the family focal point.

The biggest outward change is the 21.5-inch LCD touchscreen, which serves as the refrigerator’s digital command center and seamlessly connects to your smartphone. Three cameras inside snap photos every time the door is closed to update the food situation and create a grocery list.

Now, if you are at the store and trying to remember which food items to buy, you can view inside the refrigerator through a smartphone app. Other food management features in the Family Hub include:

  • Instacart – The leading national online grocery delivery service, delivering groceries from your favorite stores straight to your door in as little as one hour.
  • Groceries by MasterCard – Order groceries online from leading retailers like Fresh Direct and ShopRite and pay for them through a simple, single check-out with any U.S.-issued credit or debit cards.
  • Allrecipes – Access recipes rated and reviewed by millions of cooks, as well as cooking advice tips and how-to videos.
  • Shopping List – Compile and keep track of your grocery lists, which seamlessly sync between fridge and smartphone.
  • Food Reminders – Use the Family Hub™ screen or your smartphone to drag and drop expiration dates to the image of items inside to know what needs to be used, and by when.
  • Fridge Manager – Easily control the refrigerator and freezer temperatures, and check the status of the water filter.

The onboard digital screen allows users to access and store all important aspects of family life such as schedules, photos, and artwork; tap into the Internet; and check news, weather and more. Apps and features to help better connect families include:

  • StickiBoard – Keep in touch with family members by sharing multiple calendars, posting photos and writing notes directly on the screen [or with] your mobile device.
  • WhiteBoard – Write notes and draw pictures on the Family Hub and through your mobile device to leave messages for your family.
  • Photo Album – Display daily photos and iconic family images for all to see.
  • AccuWeather – Get weather updates with Superior Accuracy while multi-tasking in the kitchen.
  • Web Browser – Surf the Internet using a full browser for all your family needs.

The Family Hub™ also excels in food storage and preservation. It’s innovative and exclusive FlexZone, located in the bottom right quadrant of the refrigerator, transforms from fridge to freezer by toggling between five customizable temperature settings. The 28-cu. ft. Family Hub also places a premium on keeping food fresh with its Triple Cooling system. With three evaporators and a network of sensors, Triple Cooling maintains even humidity levels throughout the refrigerator to provide a more precise temperature calibration.

MSRP is $5,999.99 for a Counter Depth size and $5,799.99 for Full Depth size.


A smart thermostat can help reduce energy costs and improve home comfort. The Lennox iComfort S30 lets users take control with a smartphone to be more responsive to a hectic family schedule. The Lennox iComfort S30 thermosat doesn’t just control temperatures like a conventional thermostat, it automatically adapts to individual lifestyles – creating a living environment.

Features include:

Energy Savings: Using the GPS on your smartphone, the iComfort S30's Smart AwayMode can detect when the family is away and automatically set the thermostat to an energy-saving mode and return a home to the desired temperature when a family member starts returning home – adapting to a household's unique schedules.

Comfort: The iComfort S30's "Feels Like" Temperature, similar to a weather report, takes into account indoor and outdoor temperature and humidity to make a home feel exactly like the homeowner wants it to. For example, when the thermostat is set to 72 degrees, a home will "Feel Like" 72 degrees year-round.

Healthy Air: The first-of-its-kind Allergen Defender on the iComfort S30 gives immediate allergy relief by monitoring air quality and pollen levels outside. When high levels of pollutants and allergens are detected, the fan automatically turns on to keep the home's air clean.

Peace of Mind:  The thermostat’s advanced warning system predicts problems before they occur and alerts the homeowner’s service company.


The Whirlpool Smart Top Load Washer and Dryer use connected technology to not only better care for clothes, but enable families to help other families, load for load.

From the intuitive touch display that simply asks "what to wash" and "how to wash," to an enhanced diagnostics tool built to help correct common user errors with easy how-to guides, to 'Works with Nest'  and quiet mode. Remote settings provide peace of mind that laundry will get done even while away from home.

The new Connect to care program on the Whirlpool Mobile app allows users to convert each load of laundry into a donation to Habitat for Humanity, literally transforming an everyday chore into an act of love. Families can designate their desired amount of giving per load. By doing what most families do daily, Whirlpool brand creates a tech-forward approach to helping other families thrive.

Users have access to a number of custom downloadable cycles for the family's most important items with anticipated cycles such as: high performance athletic wear, comforters, baby clothes, hand-wash fabrics and more. New custom wash cycles, direct from Whirlpool engineers, are rolled out on the Whirlpool Mobile. In addition, the laundry pair connects seamlessly with the Nest Learning Thermostat to thoughtfully and intuitively enable users to prevent wrinkles in the dryer when they're away and even activate quiet mode when they're home. 

The new connected system makes saving energy and resources a top priority. If the Nest Thermostat is set to Away during the drying cycle, the EcoBoost option is activated. The EcoBoost option can take advantage of slightly longer drying times at lower temperatures to help save energy while the family is out.

For people who are enrolled in Nest's Rush Hour Rewards program through a participating energy provider, the washer and dryer can automatically delay the start of a cycle during high-demand energy periods, saving the family money.

Additionally, Automatic Load Size Sensing technology uses water level sensors to detect the load size and automatically adjusts water usage, which helps to save resources. When a service issue occurs, an enhanced diagnostics tool provides easy how-to guides to help resolve common user errors.


LG Electronics (LG) advanced dishwasher, model LDT8786ST, aims to clean dishes more thoroughly while making annoying water spots a thing of the past.

LG’s proprietary TrueSteam technology blasts dishes with a high-temperature cloud of steam to help provide superior washing results with fewer water spots. TrueSteamis designed to practicallymelt away even the toughest food residue such as burnt cheese, dried egg yolk and bacon grease. Even lipstick and stubborn fingerprints on glassware are no match for the power of gentle steam.

MultiMotion, uses an innovative wash arm to deliver more powerful, quicker wash cycles. This robotic cleaning arm combines a circular sweeping action with powerful bi-directional spin to shoot water in every direction for sparkling clean dishes regardless of shape or location. MultiMotion also saves time, completing a full cycle in only 59 minutes.

Driven by LG’s powerful Inverter Direct Drive Motor, the LDT8786ST provides users with the cleaning power they demand, backed by a 10-year warranty. The Inverter Direct Drive Motor offers a unique Dual Zone option which adjusts the water spray intensity on each rack, allowing fragile glassware to be washed gently in the upper rack while heavily soiled pots and pans receive a more powerful wash in the lower rack in the same cycle.

Smart functions allow customers to download customized cycles from the LG website and to notify users when the LDT8786ST needs to be cleaned. The dishwasher also comes equipped with Smart Diagnosis so customer service representatives can quickly troubleshoot mechanical issues remotely, reducing costly, time consuming home visits.

WiFi Switch

Start small with home automation with a plug-in product like the Belkin WeMo Switch.

Plug anything you want into Belkin's WeMo Switch, and you can turn it on and off from your phone, schedule it to come on automatically, or trigger it using the free automation service IFTTT (IF This, Then That).

Read more about smart home appliances.



Topics: Appliances, Connected Homes / Smart Homes, Freezers, Interior Design, Kitchen, Lighting, Ranges, Refrigerators, Washers & Dryers, Water Saving Devices, WaterSense

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