Smart technology can help people manage the hustle and bustle of everyday life. For example, people who utilize smart technology in their homes can adjust their thermostats, dim or increase lighting in a room, adjust the volume on their televisions, and lock their doors. Thanks to smart technology, homeowners can do all of those things and more in mere seconds, all without getting off the couch.
Many people were quick to embrace smart technology in their living rooms, where families typically gather to watch movies and entertain guests. But smart technology can be utilized in every room of the house, including the kitchen. In fact, smart refrigerators are one smart appliance that forecasters predict will become increasingly popular in the coming years.
A 2019 report from Grand View Research estimated that the global smart refrigerators market size, which was valued at roughly $254 million in 2018, will expand at a compound annual growth rate of 13.7% between 2018 and 2025. So while smart refrigerators might be a curiosity for many homeowners at the moment, they will very likely become a staple of many kitchens in the years to come, as adults become more informed about the ways they can benefit by bringing smart tech into their kitchens.
- Smart refrigerators can reduce food waste. Many people have found spoiled food in their refrigerators, and the problem of food waste is considerable across the globe. According to the United Nations Development Program, 20% of food purchased in India is discarded, while the Economic Research Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture estimates that 133 billion pounds of food are wasted in the United States every year. Smart refrigerators can help reduce food waste by reminding owners of expiration dates, potentially compelling them to make use of food before it needs to be discarded.
- Smart refrigerators can simplify grocery shopping. The HBS Digital Initiative, which aims to build community and expertise around digital transformation at Harvard Business School and Beyond, notes that some smart refrigerators can be linked to online grocery shopping apps, potentially putting an end to instances in which shoppers forget items at the grocery store. Smart refrigerators also can be linked to recipe apps, which can make shopping for ingredients that much easier.
- Smart refrigerators can save shoppers money. Smart refrigerators can be expensive, with some costing many thousands of dollars. However, over time smart refrigerators can help shoppers save money by saving them from buying items they don’t need. Smart refrigerators can take inventory of what’s inside a refrigerator, making it less likely that shoppers buy duplicate items.
Smart refrigerators may still be a curiosity for many homeowners, but they figure to become more commonplace in the years to come.