While it seems like there is a new connected countertop appliance announced every other week, the smart kitchen revolution has largely left everyday kitchen tools like spatulas, whisks and other cooking utensils behind.
That’s where iCuisine‘s founder Luic Mucha hopes to change things. Mucha was at the Housewares show this week in Chicago showing off his company’s modular smart kitchen system that connects utensils to a smart sensor system that syncs with a smartphone app to assist the user in cooking a meal. The system utilizes a smart transmitter called the Wi-Key that plugs into the company’s cooking utensils to gather temperature or weight data and send it to the app. The system, which has twenty or so different smart kitchen products including a cutting board, measuring cup and frying pan, can also help the user walk through recipes step by step.
Mucha, who was awarded a patent for the technology in 2015, said: “when we started development, we didn’t want to create a product that would be too expensive.” According to Mucha, by putting all the electronics in a single sensor, they can keep the cost down. The company is planning on releasing a branded line of products in the US called iCuisine, but is also discussing licensing the technology with consumer electronics and appliance manufacturers.
I have to admit, I like the idea of a modular system that is focused on keeping costs down. I am also intrigued by the possibilities of extending intelligence beyond bigger countertop and built-in appliances to any number of utensils a typical cook uses when cooking something up in the kitchen. However, the one thing I am not sure about is whether a busy cook will want to go through the busywork of pulling out the Wi-Key sensor out of each utensil as they go from step to step within the cooking process.
You can see my interview with Mucha from the show floor at Housewares below: