For those who only spend time in the kitchen out of necessity rather than a love for cooking, Whirlpool has added an integration with recipes app Yummly to help make meals a bit less stressful. At CES 2018, the appliance company has unveiled a new smart kitchen range and microwave that pair with Yummly so you can select recipes you’d like to make and the appliances will automatically preheat, cook, and turn themselves off when the meals are done cooking.
Yummly works by letting you pick your dietary preferences, ingredients you have in the fridge, or cooking difficulty / time and walks you through how to make a dish with step-by-step instructions. If you have random stuff in the fridge, you’ll also be able to use Yummly to take a photo of the ingredients to have the app recommend recipes based on what you’ve got. If you prefer to plan recipes ahead of time, you can also create a shopping list from the app, or select to have the ingredients sent to Instacart for one-hour deliveries.
Once you’re ready, Yummly can send notifications on when you should start cooking to have a meal ready by a certain time. As you follow along the app, it’ll send preheating and cooking instructions (bake, broil, etc.) to the oven or microwave so everything is ready to go by the time all prep is done. There’s also an option to automatically turn the oven down to a warming temperature when the cooking’s done in case you don’t plan to eat right away. This is similar to other smart cooking solutions like the Tovala oven that scans its pre-packaged meals to automatically set individualized cooking temperature and time.
Of course, because this is CES, a smart appliance isn’t quite complete without a third party voice assistant integration. Amazon recently announced that Alexa can now be used to control ovens and microwaves, and the new Whirlpool line will be compatible with this new feature. They will also support Google Assistant and can send notifications to the Apple Watch.
All this means your appliances will require Wi-Fi to operate all of their connected features, though obviously it’ll work normally as a dumb oven should your internet go under. The new range seems useful for those who are trying to be better at cooking and want to optimize for time, though eventually the goal should be to know how to do all this yourself in the future and not rely on the web to make sure you don’t burn your house down if the Wi-Fi disconnects for a bit.
The new Whirlpool smart range and microwave will be available later this spring starting at $1,949 for the oven and $819 for the microwave. Yummly’s image recognition feature will launch in beta this spring, with a wider rollout scheduled for summer.