Today, we are looking at an IoT enabled ‘smart’ kettle which is a simple re-take on the classic household kettle. In a nutshell, the iKettle fixes a number of problems which you never knew you had with your current kettle, which is our starting point for this iKettle 2.0 review
- Have you ever wished you could mentally flick a switch whilst upstairs, and the kettle in your kitchen would dire into life and have the water at the perfect temperature (in this case 65, 80, 95 or 100’c) by the time you make it to the kitchen?
- Have you ever wished you could steal an extra five minutes in bed, because you could set a ‘kettle alarm’, which ensures you have a hot brew ready for you as you drag yourself out of bed?
- Have you ever thought that it would be nice to arrive home to a freshly boiled kettle, just ready to pour for the perfect cup of tea?
- Have you ever thought it would be nice to get a smartphone notification when your kettle is boiled, helping you to save energy by over-boiling?
As you have probably guessed, the above is what the iKettle 2.0 promises to do for us, and maybe now you see why I opened by suggesting that this product fixes a number of issues that you did not know you have with your current kettle?
So just how good is this product? Lets dive in
iKettle 2.0 review – is this just a toy?
When I first saw the use cases, i’ll admit that I found them a bit tenuous. You maybe even caught a sniff of sarcasm in my four numbered points to open this review with.
When you consider its other core features – which generally focus on setting schedules (whether waking up or returning from work), WiFi enabled location settings (like the app asking you if you want the kettle boiling as you come to within range of your home wifi network and its slightly odd ‘socialize feature’, where you can interact with friends and share tea making success stories.
So i started by thinking of some uses cases;
- Having a freshly brewed kettle in the morning *may* help get me out of bed, and is a nice thought if not fully useful (it doesn’t actually make the coffee – so if this was a smart coffee maker I would ‘get it’ more to be totally honest)
- If I was older, or less abled bodied (disabled even) then this could be a god send. Having to jump up to start the kettle and then stand around for a few minutes whilst it boils could be hard work, and the time saving, ease of use of the app and other selling points are really genuine here
- I like the idea of being able to ask friends if they want coffee at the end of a dinner party without having to leave the conversation until the kettle is ready to be poured
- I like the energy efficiency aspect, and the fact it could save a few pennies of a year is a bonus
- It looks great, and any home gizmos that look great have a use case for me
It is clear that the makers of the iKettle have solved some problems that we didn’t know existed and have upgraded the humble kettle to a product befitting of a smart home.
The downsides of the iKettle:
- When returning home, it would be more useful to be able to trigger the iKettle to boil when getting near to home, but not right on top of home -as is needed for the wifi to connect – as in reality this does not actually save much time
- Its Wifi connectivity can be a bit patchy, meaning on more than a couple of occasions it has not actually fulfilled its potential at all, meaning that i did not get my wake up coffee.
- A major downside or flaw to the process is the need to fill the darned kettle, otherwise too often you’re trying to boil an empty kettle. The trick is to remember to leave your kettle filled after you use it, but for many (all?) of us, this requires a retraining process and it really does not come naturally!
- The build quality is a little lacking, and the lid on my model does not feel like its got much legs in it – i’d expect 12-18 months of use at max before you’re replacing. I’d expect more from a traditional kettle
iKettle 2.0 review – final thoughts
This is a cool concept, and it does have some great use cases. If you can see an advantage for you in any of the features, then why not invest the £110 to buy it? You can check it out on the official website here and its readily available on sites like Amazon and Firebox too.
For me, the features are interesting and nice to have, but the loop is not fully closed and the downsides are marked. I consider the price point, at north of £100, to make it slightly hard to recommend for all but the elderly and disabled. What’s your take? feel free to share your experiences and thoughts in the comments below