With touchscreens already an integral part of our daily lives, whether using a phone, driving a car, or making a purchase, the obvious next step was to put them on appliances. The benefits of touchscreens are gaining acceptance with homeowners based on ease of use, speed, durability, and cleanliness.
Various screen sizes are employed depending on function, complexity, and available space. For example, the display on a coffee machine may be sleek and compact, whereas on a washer or dryer it can run the width of the machine. Refrigerator display screens might encompass the full size of the panel and feature online weather reports, showcase family photos, and even show movies.
In the laundry room, smart features may not be able to sort, fold, match socks, or hang up your laundry – yet – but washers now come equipped with a smart dispenser that automatically uses the correct amount of soap based on the load setting. They can also let you know when you need more detergent, order it for you online, and help determine correct settings based on what you are washing. Dryers now sense when your clothes are dry, keep tumbling them so they don’t crease, and let you know when the vent needs cleaning to avoid fires. All of these functions are simple with the new durable touchscreens on units.
Each and every kitchen appliance is now available with convenient features that employ touchscreens to set step-by-step instructions. A big sale on your favorite ice cream? With the touch of a screen, you can reset a section of the refrigerator from cooling to freezing – and back again after a trip to the farmers market. Do you need your speed oven to defrost and cook dinner and then keep it warm until you get home? It’s now possible with simple programs that link your phone to the touchscreen on the range.
Another advantage is that you can link all of your smart appliances so that your home system will monitor and alert you to power outages, when filters need ordering, and to fridge doors left ajar or burners left on. No more “Oh no, did I turn off the oven?” worries – very reassuring. Smart appliances can also use less energy, as it’s easy to schedule energy-heavy appliances to run at cost-effective times.
The durability of the new touchscreens is due to a multilayer process that consists of the display panel covered by the touch control, then a touch sense layer and the protective cover. All of this ensures that a screen can safely be cleaned when sticky or dirty fingers touch them. No more grimy knobs! Most people also find that the backlit screens are easier to read, and those who have difficulty pushing buttons or turning knobs love the ease of a touchscreen.
And let’s not overlook the fact that touchscreens are attractive as well as functional, lending a sleek appeal to every appliance in your home. In other words, they look cool!