LG goes green and releases a smart home appliance suite

LG Electronics (LG) has unveiled a full range of smart appliances, enabled by LG THINQ Technology, at the 2011 International CES.

Comprising five key features – Smart Grid, Smart Diagnosis, Smart Access, Smart Adapt and Food Management – LG says it now offers a complete smart solution that lets consumers manage their homes in a more centralised and convenient way.

A centerpiece of LG THINQ Technology, the Smart Grid, deploys a smart meter to ensure that appliances use the minimum amount of energy at the least expensive rates as possible. When switched on, the Smart Grid gives consumers the choice of using “Recommend Time,” which does the washing at the nearest, most cost-effective time or immediately if there are no off-peak electricity options available anytime soon.

Alternatively, users can opt for “Lowest Rate,” which finds the time when electricity rates are at their lowest. Consumers can also select the washing time themselves, and if they have to do the washing at a peak time, the washing machine will recommend the most energy-efficient cycle.

Using the Smart Grid, LG’s ovens for example offer three cost options – low, middle and high – that take into account both the duration of the cooking cycle and varying costs of electricity.

Similarly, LG’s refrigerators can use a unique algorithm to adjust various functions, such as defrost time control – to offer further savings on energy bills at peak times. What’s more, LG refrigerators even count and display the frequency at which homeowners open the refrigerator door, giving them the information they need to save even more energy.

The LCD display on LG’s smart appliances shows daily, weekly or monthly reports detailing the appliance’s overall levels of energy consumption and associated costs.

Daily totals for electricity usage and subsequent charges will be accessible on smartphones and tablet PCs. With these new functions, consumers can save on time and energy bills while also opting for a more eco-friendly lifestyle.

LG Smart Diagnosis eliminates a step in the troubleshooting process, because issues can at times be identified without the need for a service technician to visit the home for diagnosis, saving time and money.

In those instances where a service visit is required, the field technician can come prepared with the correct parts, enabling the repair to be resolved in one visit.

LG Smart Access makes it possible for homeowners to monitor and control home appliances remotely from outside of the home. Using a smartphone or tablet PC, users can manage their washing cycle from the office, or set their refrigerator temperature while they’re at the gym.

Alert messages will be sent to the user’s smartphone or tablet PC for items such as the end of a washing cycle or a potential product issue.

According to LG, with all these innovative functions and smart options, the THINQ Technology is “helping consumers live more empowered lives and enjoy a new level of convenience and interactivity”.