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Intelligent Washing Machines

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Sources in Korea are reporting that manufacturers are looking to release what is termed AlphaGo washing machines with artificial intelligence (AI), it seems intelligent machines are coming whether people want them or not.

These new raft of washing machines autonomously regulate the washing strength and amount of detergents by detecting load size and contamination levels.

According to sources LG Electronics’ new Signature washing machine has a sensor which detects the load size and soiling levels of laundry and automatically dose the proper amount of detergents.

Unlike existing washing machines, these intelligent machines can measure the weight of laundry by spinning the drum and calculating the power pressured on the motor, and detect the contamination levels by soaking laundry with the sensor.

We reckon that has to be the like of a turbidity sensor that has been used on dishwashers in the past and, dropped by most as they proved a total pain, not very reliable. Hopefully this technology is better but, only time will tell.

Miele has also used it’s own automated dosing system in the honeycomb drum washer. The system automatically puts various special capsuled detergents twice in the washing process at the optimal timing according to textile materials. In particular, the washing machine lets users know the detergent levels through the Internet of Things (IoT) and automatically orders detergents when it runs out of them.

Some people like that, many don’t. The big issue being that you are tethered to whatever Miele charge as, there is no option on the detergent you can use if you want to have the dosing automated as we understand it.

The claims by manufacturers is that these kinds of systems lower energy use as well as detergent use however, we do hold doubts about these claims without any independent verification of them as, so far, all we’ve seen is marketing hype.

They will appeal to some people though purely from the perspective of ease of use, if they work as advertised.

Samsung is also said to be heading down this path with an automatic detergent injection function in its products, including the AddWash released last year.

Daewoo has been producing drum washing machines with the automatic detergent injection system from 2009 although we’ve yet to see these in the UK.

Do not expect these features to come cheap however as manufacturers scramble to add some sort of innovation and inject value back into the washing machine market.

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