Posts tagged with "Technology"
Imagine receiving a text message or email on your smartphone while you’re on the commute home, telling you dinner will be ready in 15 minutes.
Nothing unusual about that.
Except this text message has not been sent by your significant other half, it’s been dispatched wirelessly by your cooker.
Your cooker knows what time you should get home and what is the premium time to have dinner ready so the family can sit down together for their regular evening meal.
Except, your train is delayed and you’re going to be late. So you send a reply text back and the cooker adjusts the cooking time accordingly. Nothing will be spoiled, no burned pastry or overcooked vegetables here.
Sounds like science fiction, doesn’t it? But the truth is, its really not that far off.
Your kitchen is getting smarter by the day.
We already have coffee machines that can be controlled remotely via an app on your smartphone. And internet-connected fridges that will soon be able to sense what you are short of, order it from your chosen online grocery store and even have it delivered to your door.
There are already domestic tech manufacturers developing GPS-enabled kitchen equipment that will sense automatically when you’re nearing home so dinner can be ready when you arrive at the door.
Before too long some bright spark will realise that if all these machines can inter-connect and speak the same mechanical language then the team ethic will mean they’ll achieve so much more together than alone.
It’s impressive stuff and it won’t be long before we look back at these years and wonder how we managed to survive without Fred The Fridge’s precise grocery ordering skills getting dinner in for us.
What do you think, is this a step too far?
The time-saving technology families want in their kitchens
Long gone are the days when a microwave was seen as cutting edge kitchen technology. There are now a huge variety of innovative gadgets to make every task in the kitchen as quick and easy as possible, from cooking up delicious dinners to keeping little ones entertained.
With so many options out there, which are the gadgets that families are most excited to include in their kitchens in 2018?
1. Smart fridge
Smart fridges like the Family Hub™ 3 from Samsung undoubtedly top the list of most coveted kitchen technology thanks to the sheer number of helpful features and functions they offer for everyday life. Take the internal fridge camera for example, which lets you see what’s in the fridge at home via the Samsung SmartThings app on your mobile phone, so you can check whether you’ve run out of milk while you’re browsing the supermarket shelves. Then there’s the built-in touchscreen tablet complete with recipe inspiration and grocery ordering to plan and purchase dinner ingredients without leaving the kitchen. To top this off, this state-of-the-art fridge from Samsung is even voice activated, so you don’t have to lift a finger to plan your next meal.
Beyond cooking, the Family Hub™ 3 is also equipped with family calendars to keep on track of your schedule and a multimedia hub to stream your favourite radio station, Spotify playlist or TV programme through the fridge screen and inbuilt speakers.
2. Smart oven
Busy parents love the fact they can preheat the Samsung smart oven via their phone before getting home, ready to pop dinner straight in to cook the moment they get in the door. After all, saving twenty minutes in the cooking process can make all the difference between contented little tummies and stroppy hungry monsters!
That’s not the only reason smart ovens make the list though. Timer mode also sends a notification straight to your phone when the cooking’s done, meaning you can relax in front of your favourite TV programme in the next room without worrying about burning dinner.
3. Connected hood & hob
Find yourself forgetting to switch the extractor fan on when cooking, only to have unwanted smells lingering around days later? Samsung’s connected hood and hob work in sync so the fan is automatically triggered to the correct level as soon as you turn on the hob. Not only does this keep your kitchen smelling fresh, it also protects your entire kitchen against damp damage from excess moisture or discolouration from escaping smoke.
4. Smart dishwasher
Most gadgets make this list because of what they do when they are working, but smart dishwashers are truly ingenious because of what they do to stop something going wrong. With built-in sensors to detect a potential blockage or leak, smart dishwashers can alert you to a problem and cut off water flow before a potential issue turns into a full-blown kitchen flood, saving you time and money on costly repairs.
5. Cabinet Plus
If we’re honest, we’ve probably all got jars and packages lurking at the back of our kitchen cupboards that are way past their sell-by date from ill-fated decisions to attempt a new cuisine or over-ambitious recipe. After all, out of sight is out of mind.
Instead of wasting the hard-to-reach spaces in your kitchen on under-used ingredients, the Cabinet Plus offers a mechanised shelf that descends from the back of your cupboards at the touch of a button, so everything is always in easy reach.
6. Multifunctional sink & hot water tap
With property prices ever growing, we’re all looking for clever solutions to make the most of limited space in compact kitchens, so the Food and Drink sink is a real life-saver. As this smart solution is especially designed to fit a number of attachments, from chopping boards and colanders to a drainer and ice bucket fitting, it’s easy to convert from sink, to work space, to party lifesaver! Combined with a hot water tap, which instantly provides hot, cold or boiling water to save the need for a kettle, it’s safe to say these innovations will change the way you think about the kitchen sink.
7. USB Charging tray
Smartphones have changed our lives for the better in so many ways, but with so many gadgets around the house, how many times do you find yourself sifting through tangled wires to find the right charger or adapter? Magnet’s built in USB charging tray helps you regain control over this all-too-common issue, with a sleek wooden tray setting inside your kitchen drawer, complete with built-in charging ports.
8. Machine lift
If you love baking, you probably find yourself hauling heavy food mixers, bread-makers and blenders out of over-stuffed kitchen cabinets several times a week, scattering assorted Tupperware and utensils in your wake. To take the strain out of using your favourite gadgets, the machine lift offers a handy movable shelf mechanism installed within your kitchen cupboards, which smoothly lifts heavy kitchen items up to worktop level ready to use.
Kitchen innovations for budding chefs
When you love cooking, it’s easy to get carried away collecting every new recipe book, ingredient and gadget available to try out the latest recipes or revolutionary cooking techniques.
All this can take a toll on your kitchen though, as worktops become cluttered with food processors and appliances, kitchen cabinets get stacked to bursting, and finding the right utensil in a drawer becomes like finding a needle in a haystack.
Thankfully, there is another way.
With these helpful storage solutions, you no longer have to make the choice between a tidy kitchen and indulging your foodie passions.
Fed up of rooting around your kitchen cabinets and having to take every piled-up packet of pasta or jar of jam out to get to that one forgotten ingredient lingering at the back of the cupboard? The Cabinet Plus helps you say goodbye to the inevitable wastage of an over-stocked cupboard, featuring a concealed storage unit at the back of your cabinet that drops down at the press of a button for easy access.
As an extra bonus, it’s fully customisable with different layouts to suit whatever you want to store, from magnetic strips to hang utensils, to sectioned-off shelving for ingredients and even an iPad stand so your favourite recipe app is always within reach.
It’s party time
If you love throwing a dinner party so you can show off your culinary skills to family and friends, then the pocket door larder is your perfect kitchen sidekick. With double doors that open up and slide back into the unit, it makes the ideal location for a cocktail bar stacked with glasses, mixers and exotic liqueurs, ready to get the party started.
Lift it up
Take the hassle out of heavy kitchen appliances with the machine lift. This handy mechanism does the heavy lifting for you through a moving shelf within your kitchen cabinets that can be extended outwards to bring appliances up to worktop level.
Space saving spices
While keeping spices at the back of a cabinet might be suitable for occasional cooks who prefer microwave meals to the hassle of cooking, if you’re a budding gourmet chef who loves whipping up recipes from scratch then you’ll want your spices at hand on a daily basis. The ideal solution is a spice rack built into the end of your kitchen cabinets, so all your seasonings and herbs are within easy reach whenever you’re creating a culinary masterpiece.
Stack it your way
How tidy are your worktops right now? If you’ve run out of cabinet space and started crowding kitchen counters with artisanal cooking oils, spiralisers and scales, then the Shelf Plus is here to help. This stackable shelving unit can either be wall-mounted or placed on worktops and comes with a whole host of customisable accessories to fit everything from sugar jars and kitchen roll holders to knife blocks and herb pots.
The Third Tap You Need In Your Kitchen
As a nation we are renowned for loving a hot beverage. Whether you take your coffee black, enjoy a builder’s brew or prefer peppermint infused tea, we just can’t get enough of them.
What do you do while waiting for the kettle to boil? Think of the errands you have to run that day, check your post or put some washing away? Well what if we were to tell you those three minutes of wasted boiling time could be gone forever with the introduction of a boiling water tap.
2015 has seen a surge in sales of the ‘coolest’ kitchen appliance on the market, in the form of instant boiling water taps running directly from your water supply.
At Magnet we have a range of taps in differing finishes all with the sole purpose of making brew time easier. Who knows what you could do with those three minutes now?
The taps are proven to be economically friendly, plus it is important to note for any conscious parents out there that the taps have safety locks on them.
As if we needed another reason to enjoy brew time, the Insinkerator 3N1 Steaming Hot and Cold Water Tap also filters the water. Providing you with perfectly filtered and instant hot boiling water.
Ultimate tips for throwing the perfect party
If there is one thing us Brits are good at it’s throwing a garden party. We run with the stereotypes, drown ourselves in bunting and cucumber sandwiches and fill our gardens with enough fairy lights to illuminate a small country.
But how can we avoid a dull atmosphere, luke-warm drinks and a soggy soiree? Well, we can’t help with the weather, but follow this handy guide to be the host with the most this summer season.
SET THE SCENE – Fill your garden with as much greenery as possible. Plant flowers, hanging baskets and place additional flowers in vases dotted across your tables. Opt for mellow, soft colours to create a chilled ambience and embellish with bunting in similar colours.
FILL UP YOUR GUESTS – Be unconventional and don’t feel tied to the usual barbeque food. Instead devise a menu of deli sandwiches, charcuterie boards, fresh cheese and bread plus a varied range of fruit and sweet treats. Equally as important as the food is of course the cocktails, don’t forget to serve the guaranteed summer hit – Pimms.
ENTERTAIN – Whether it’s a family or adults only party, there always has to be an element of fun. Bring back some classic lawn games such as boules, croquet or charades. If you have music in your kitchen, such as the Magnet integrated Sound Bar, open wide your doors and windows and enjoy a chilled out playlist in your garden.
Whatever garden parties you attend this summer make sure you enjoy them, it will be winter before we know it!
You may have been doing it wrong all this time
At last we have a guide to end family arguments about loading the dishwasher. Those Sunday lunch tantrums when Dad thinks he knows best about filling the dishwasher with the colossal amount of plates, side plates, bowls and pans when realistically it’s never all going to go in.
What category do you fall into when it comes to stacking the dishwasher? Are you a meticulous packer, practicing like you are piecing together a nuclear bomb? Or maybe a jumbled mess, in a ‘throw it in and hope for the best’ kind of way?
Whichever way, thanks to a survey by a leading dishwasher brand we now know what exactly is right and just what we have been doing wrong all these years.
DO stack plates by size, facing the same way
DO prevent drips by emptying the bottom rack first
DO position knives point down for safety. Forks and spoons can go either way
DO place cups at an angle so water can run off
DO make sure glasses are not touching so they don’t chip or break
DO wait until you have a full load to save water and electricity
DON’T rinse before loading – just scrape off excess food
DON’T dump everything in at random
DON’T stack pans on top of each other
DON’T put crystal in the dishwasher
DON’T leave dishwasher tablets lying around as they can harm children
Whether stubborn partners or awkward flatmates choose to listen to this, or stick to their own firmly held dishwasher stacking views, remains to be seen.
For now check out the range of dishwashers available for your new Magnet kitchen - http://www.magnet.co.uk/accessories/appliances-/dishwashers/
Choose a sink that works best for your kitchen
The kitchen sink is often one of the most used fixtures within the home, so why not spend some time designing and choosing the perfect one for your kitchen?
There are more options than you may realise, with free-standing, double sinks, draining boards and tap styles, which will work best for you? Choose from ceramic, stainless steel or quartz settings in a range of different colours to suit every kitchen style.
A beautifully sleek and traditional option from Magnet is the Illusion Sink, a design that you can see one minute, but not the next. The Illusion Tap can be pushed down into the sink, out of sight. Slide over the Corian panel, to cover the sink and provide instant extra worktop surface that functions as well as it looks. The Illusion sink is an innovation that combines dream gadgetry with practical functionality, whilst looking the part.
A practical, modern addition to your kitchen sink is a boiling water tap. Separate to the traditional cold and hot taps, with boiling water on demand this time efficient addition to your sink will allow for a lovely hot tea or coffee at any time. What’s more, Magnet also offers an additional filtered cold-water tap with refreshing, chilled, filtered water direct from the tap.
Another key consideration when designing your kitchen is the worktop surface surrounding the sink. For large family households, wood may not be the best option, as this requires the most up-keep and needs to be prepped and protected for water exposure. On the other hand, quartz is a suitable surface to surround a kitchen sink, as it is less porous and much more resistant to water and general damage that can occur around the sink.
Expert advice from Kate Watson-Smyth
Kitchens are messy places. We seem to spend as much, if not more, time clearing up as we do preparing and eating the food we have made. There’s all the waste from the preparation and packaging and then there’s all the tidying afterwards.
In recent years, with the move towards a more environmentally friendly lifestyle, and the insistence that we recycle more, we have needed to find more space to store that waste. Most of us now have a recycling bin, a normal bin and, often a food waste bin. This often sits on the worktop, is unsightly and takes up valuable space. And anyway, who wants the food waste sitting next to the fresh ingredients?
Well, the Magnet Innovations team has come up with a clever solution and, this is one that I would definitely like to have in my kitchen.
It’s a bin in a drawer. So far, so normal. Many already have a bin in the cupboard under the kitchen sink. However, this is high up and sits directly under the worktop. This means you can peel your potatoes, spiralise your courgettes, or slice your carrots and then simply open the drawer and sweep everything in.
There’s no grabbing handfuls of peelings out of the sink and trying to get to them to the bin without dropping any. There’s no having to separate peelings from carrier bag as that involves two different bins. And, crucially, no food waste on show.
Of course, you don’t have to use this bin just for food waste. At that height it’s ideal for those who have difficulty bending over a traditional bin.
There is one more element that appeals to me too. I have never liked those large free-standing bins. Firstly, they take up space and secondly, you probably don’t need to empty them every day which means you are keeping rubbish in your house. I have a small bin under the sink which I empty daily – no smells, no indoor rubbish.
This Waste Bin is the perfect solution and it might even free up some space under the kitchen sink.
How to organise your kitchen
The kitchen is often referred to as the heart of the home, so a well-organised kitchen can make all the difference to the overall efficiency of your home.
They say a great test to determine how organised your own kitchen is, is to ask someone else to prepare a meal and then clean up in your kitchen. Not just a ploy to get out of the cooking, but you’ll actually be able to determine how organised your space is, by how long it takes them to find their way around the kitchen. Two birds with one stone…
Whilst there are the basic tips and hacks for kitchen organisation, such as stacking pans within each other and storing cleaning products under the sink, Magnet offers some great products to help get your kitchen organised.
The three-part recycling bin makes easy work of sorting your rubbish before collection day. Made up of three individual colour-coded compartments, the bin folds neatly away into cabinet space so you can avoid cluttering your space with numerous recycling bins.
Create multiple layers of storage for food or crockery by incorporating an internal drawer system, which is neatly hidden within your kitchen units. The unit works great with base cabinets and allows for maximum storage without compromising on style. Other innovative additions to your drawers include drawer dividers and plate holders, to neatly lay out cutlery, crockery and pans.
Take your organisation to the next level and give your kitchen the technical edge with one of Magnet’s most recent innovations, the Cabinet Plus. Ingeniously located shelves at the back of your cabinets reveal themselves at the flick of a switch for instant access to your kitchen tools and accessories.
Organisation in the kitchen can only make it easier when it comes to cooking and cleaning, and who doesn’t want that?
The three main kitchen looks for your home
When the time comes to update your kitchen, it can be tricky to choose a look that is on trend, suits your home and will last for years to come.
If you’re thinking about a brand new kitchen, you may want to consider a modern style. Modern kitchen designs often incorporate the latest colour trends and a mixture of textures to create that contemporary feel. The high gloss pale blue finish in the Astral Blue kitchen is on trend for Spring/Summer 2016.
A modern style is also the perfect setting for cutting-edge technologies such as Magnet’s Innovations Plus ranges. The Sound Plus sound bar blends seamlessly into unused plinth space beneath cabinets, choose ones with integrated handles for a super slick look.
For something equally stylish but perhaps a little cosier, traditional kitchen styles can come in a range of stunning looks. From rustic farmhouse designs to classic Edwardian styling, a traditional kitchen will stand the test of time. You can see the Edwardian influence in Magnet’s Arlington Cream, with the panelled doors, glazed units and decorative corners, which lend themselves to the architecture of the era.
Look into a range of wooden worktop options from oak to maple for that classic finishing touch.
The Shaker kitchen is an infinitely popular style, again inspired by history, the Shaker was originally created by America’s Shaker community in the 18th century. The quality of a Shaker kitchen is in the cabinet doors, the classically proportioned front features a frame and inset panel. However the historical roots don’t mean old-fashioned, Magnet’s collection of Shaker kitchens includes contemporary interpretations with gloss finishes. The soft curves of the Shaker Cream give the style a modern makeover.
Take inspiration from the three main design groups, adding personal touches to make it your own and create your dream kitchen.