Smart Appliances: Now and Future
It used to be that people welcomed appliances that had more features and were more automatic than their predecessors. The automatic toaster, for example, was introduced in the 1920s and saved countless pieces of bread from burning. Everyone welcomed the automatic washing machine, which was introduced in the 1930s and moved by itself from one cycle to the next. Another advance was the clothes drier with a timer, and then better yet, the model with a sensor that detected when the clothes were dry. Currently, these smart appliances include thermostats, clothes washers, dryers, microwaves, hot water heaters, and refrigerators. Many smart appliances are designed to communicate frequently with the smart grid to indicate how much energy they are using, as well as understand and respond to price incentives, which will provide detailed information on their use and status. In this talk, we will discuss what these smart appliances may become in the near future.