Considering Bosch recently announced a partnership with the Drop Kitchen Scale – the connected scale will sync with the appliance maker’s Series 8 Home Connect ovens – a couple of its small appliances that are making their debut at IFA 2016 are intriguing.
Both the AutoCook multicooker and the OptiMum Kitchen Machine seem tailor-made for Drop’s software. With Drop’s app, you can set a bowl on the smart scale and be taken through each step of a recipe, moving on to the next ingredient once the device registers that you’ve added the right amount of flour or salt and so on. The Drop will soon pair with some of Bosch’s ovens, so when you get to the preheat step of the recipe, the appliance will actually turn on and set itself to the correct temperature.
That kind of smarts would be pretty great in both the AutoCook and OptiMum. The former is a multicooker with a dedicated recipe app created by Bosch. But the multicooker isn’t actually connected, so you still have to do things manually. There are about 50 cooking programs, though, and the machine can handle sous vide, baking, frying, steam cooking, and more. The version that costs 269 euros ($300 U.S.) doesn’t include induction capabilities, which the Pro model (469 euros, $523) has.
The app can walk you through complicated procedures, and the multicooker will even stir your risotto for you. The company also created a printed cookbook for the multicooker, which includes about 100 recipes. That’s actually an impressive approach, because though these machines are often very versatile, there’s often a learning curve when it comes to them. Dedicating a full cookbook and creating an entire app for the machine is a smart move, but it still seems like it’s missing that interactivity with the app.
The OptiMum, which is a mixer with a built-in scale, also seems like something on the cusp of Drop-readiness. At 699 euros ($779) for the base model (the more expensive versions are $1,002 or 899 euros), you might want more capabilities than just a scale. Bosch says the mixer has sophisticated sensors that automatically stop the machine when your egg yolks are fluffy or dough is kneaded, which is pretty clever. If the OptiMum were connected, then it would automatically know just how to whip your eggs based on the Drop recipe, without you having to press a button. Whether or not similar capabilities will come to more Bosch products in the future isn’t clear, but it seems to be something Drop is considering.
Given enough time, your dishes will dry, with or without the extra heat boost of the drying cycle. But Bosch doesn’t want wait for our lives to be over, so it decided to use a mineral — zeolite — to dry dishes more efficiently. If you find your glassware is always Sahara-level dry while your plastic is still slightly moist when your dishes are done, Bosch says it will dry every dish, regardless of its material, equally well. (The mineral already has lots of commercial applications; it might be one ingredient in your anti-clumping cat litter.)
The company has been using its zeolite technology for several years now, but it really played it up with its PerfectDry dishwashers at IFA 2016, saying it’s practically perfected the zeolite technique. “Pearls” of zeolite are kept inside the dishwasher’s housing. The self-regenerating minerals both absorb moisture and put out warm air. The airflow system disperses the heated air over the dishes.
Plenty of people exclusively use cold water to wash their clothes – until their partner catches the bug going around at work, and then everything goes in the hottest, germ-killiest cycle. That’s fine for sheets and towels, but hot water is murder for certain fabrics. Bosch says it’s solved this problem with its ActiveOxygen technology, which actually debuted at last year’s IFA.
The Bosch Series 8 washing machines will come equipped with ActiveOxyen, which allows you to kill 99.99 percent of bacteria, even at 68 degrees Fahrenheit (20 degrees Celsius). The company is still light on the details of how its germ-killing technology works.