LG Introduces New Refrigerator That Opens On Command
LG has unveiled a new voice-controlled refrigerator to its appliances lineup. The new Instaview fridge’s voice assistant, can open the door when asked and share information about upcoming events. The fridge has already earned a CES 2021 Innovation Award for LG.
The AI embedded in the LG InstaView refrigerator offers a limited range of interactions, specialized for its purpose. When asked, it can open the refrigerator door, which LG suggests will help customers who have their hands full with groceries. The voice assistant is tied to sensors in the fridge, meaning it can detect how well its ice and water dispensers are operating, and if it needs a new water filter. The fridge can even connect to the Amazon Dash replenishment service and order filters when needed if the owner gives permission.
The AI is part of the overall high-tech setup of the Instaview, named for the glass panel on the front of the fridge that owners can make transparent or opaque by knocking twice. The glass portion is 23% larger than on previous models, and tt comes with LG’s Craft Ice maker, which adds the option for spherical ice balls to the usual crushed and cubed choices. The water dispenser, meanwhile, not only uses a filter but shines an ultraviolet light on the taps when used as an extra disinfectant.
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LG has been integrating voice controls into its fridges for a while, including Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. The company faces plenty of rivals, especially Samsung, which started integrating the Bixby voice assistant into its fridges back in 2017. Samsung’s new partnership between Google and Samsung’s SmartThings brand will make it possible to incorporate Google Assistant into future appliances as well.That said, none of them have simple motor control that lets users open the door by voice command.
The new refrigerator is connected to LG’s ThinQ platform and mobile app and builds on the announcement by LG president Dr. IP Park, last year that the ThinQ AI platform will incorporate all of the company’s Internet of Things products and services. That news marked a shift it how ThinQ is viewed, making it a central part of LG’s strategy instead, especially with the AIX AI framework announced at the same time. Created in a partnership with Element AI, AIX is aimed at improving the efficiency and personalization of ThinQ, as the new fridge demonstrates.
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