Over the past few weeks, high-end appliance manufacturer Miele hinted at a forthcoming new product they said would reinvent cooking. The luxury provider of ovens and other home appliances invited journalists from around the globe to join them in Berlin to get a first hand look at this miraculous new product they planned to unveil at IFA, Europe’s largest consumer electronics trade show.
And so this week at a splashy launch event complete with celebrity chefs and multi-course meals, Miele unveiled the Dialog, a new wall oven powered by RF solid state cooking technology.
RF solid state cooking uses radio frequency powered by semiconductor technology as a heat source, unlike traditional microwaves which use antiquated technology (by today’s standards) originally developed for radars used for military applications in World War 2. And unlike microwave technology, RF cooking allows for much higher precision cooking because the RF signals provide a feedback loop to help the oven understand and target specific zones within the cooking cavity.
And while the introduction of the Dialog marks the first time a luxury home wall oven brand will incorporate RF solid state cooking technology into one of its products, Miele is not the first company to announce (nor ship) a solid state RF cooking product. Two very different products were announced last year from Wayv Technologies and Midea. The Wayv Adventurer, which was originally expected to reach market this year, is a portable RF cooking device. Midea, a Chinese appliance manufacturer, announced they were working on a product called the ‘Semiconductor Heating Magic Cube’.
And while neither of those products have shipped, the IBEX One, a cooking appliance targeted for the professional kitchen, has. The IBEX One is a new product from commercial kitchen equipment conglomerate ITW, the company behind well known pro kitchen brands such as Vulcan and Hobart. The IBEX One, which has a MSRP of $18,000, is targeted at high-volume fast casual and lodging food establishments.
So while the Miele Dialog may not be the first product to have RF solid state cooking built in, there’s no doubt that the entry by a luxury brand will raise the awareness of the technology and spur other brands to accelerate plans to introduce their own RF cooking products into the consumer market. Companies like Whirlpool and Panasonic have already spent significant effort researching RF energy technology. Both are ‘promoter members’ of the RF Energy Alliance, an organization focused on creating awareness for RF energy applications like RF solid state cooking. Both Midea and Miele are members of the group.
The Miele announcement is a big win for Goji Food Solutions, a company which has 147 issued patents in the area of solid stage RF heating. The company is a spin-out of Hobart Group, where Goji founder and chairman Shlomo Ben-Haim amassed hundreds of patents around the use of RF energy for medical applications. The Miele announcement is the first design win publicly announced utilizing Goji’s technology.
The early reviews of the Dialog are impressive as the company pulled out all the stops to showcase the unique power of RF cooking. At the launch event this week, the company wowed the audience by cooking fish enclosed within a block of ice, a clever way to demonstrate the high precision heat targeting capabilities of RF cooking. RF solid state cooking from Goji utilizes algorithms to interpret sensing data gathered from what is a feedback loop from signals used to heat the food, allowing the oven to target very precise cooking zones (including, as demonstrated, fish within ice). This type of demonstration is a powerful way to showcase the differences between RF cooking and microwave technologies, and judging by the early reviews it certainly seemed to capture the imagination of journalists.
In addition to RF cooking, the Miele Dialog also incorporates cooking automation capabilities that mixes the capabilities of RF cooking and the other heating methods incorporated into the product such as convection and broiling.
The Miele Dialog is expected to ship next April and will have an MSRP of around $10 thousand. The product will first be made available in Europe and is expected to eventually make it to the US market.
Want to learn more about RF solid-state cooking? Listen to my podcast with Goji Solutions President Yuval Ben-Haim and hear Ben-Haim and others talk about RF cooking at the Smart Kitchen Summit in October.