GE Appliances has signed a partnership with Google to help it build the next generation of fridges, dishwashers and other domestic appliances. The move shows how traditional durable goods companies are continuing to try and build new services off their products.
GEA will use Google Cloud AI to enhance its AI-enabled intelligent product platform, which will deliver the owners of GEA’s home appliances insights, energy saving tips and personalized features.
For commercial customers there will be familiar IoT benefits such as extending product life, decreasing unplanned downtime and generally lowering the total cost of ownership.
An additional advantage here for GE is integration between Google Cloud, the Android operating system and Google Assistant. Nearly three quarters of mobile phones round the globe use Android, although Assistant lags some way behind market leader Alexa.
Smart appliances won’t cook your dinner for you — yet.
Source: GE Appliances
According to a recent Parks Associates report, adoption of smart appliances has trended upward, with adoption at 13% of US broadband households. In the broader category of smart home devices, the percentage of US broadband households owning three or more smart home devices increased by over 64% in the past two years, from 14% in 2018 to 23% at the end of 2020.
GE Appliances is a well known name in US homes, though less so outside America. It claims its fridges, food mixers and other devices are found in half of the homes in the US. Of course, GE Appliances no longer sits under the GE umbrella—it was spun off to Chinese home appliance maker Haier and private equity giant KKR in 2016.
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