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A Cool iCEBOX... For the Kitchen

Techstination feature for Wednesday, November 20, 2002

The company that brought you the Foreman Grill... is cooking up Internet access in the kitchen. Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. A subsidiary of the housewares company Salton Inc... .called iCEBOX... .is doing some pretty cool things in the kitchen... .

"The iCEBOX is actually an acronym for the information, communication and entertainment box."

Marketing VP Mina Cordova. This kind of iCEBOX mounts underneath a kitchen cabinet... .

"It is touch screen. It has a television tuner built into it so you can watch TV, it gives you access to the Internet on high speed, which is really nice to be able to surf the Internet with a touch screen in the kitchen and it has an FM radio tuner, it has a DVD-CD player built into it. And one of the neatest features... it has monitoring capability so you can connect it up to a camera lets say in the baby's room and you can monitor a baby while you're in the kitchen or in the front door... so you can see who is knocking at the front door."

This kind of Jetsons kitchen gadget isn't for the feint of heart... .it's usually installed professionally... or for the feint of wallet... .the price is about three thousand dollars. It runs on the Windows CE .Net operating system... which means you can't install your typical computer applications. In fact... there is no hard drive. But in addition to the touchscreen ... .there is a rather unique keyboard...

"One of the things that we're most proud of is that we spent about two and a half years designing and patenting a wireless, waterproof keyboard and remote. So our keyboards and remotes are submersible in water and really built for the rigors of the kitchen."

Next thing you know you'll be able to flip it over and use it as a cutting board. While the iCEBOX now is targeted at upscale homeowners and builders... Salton believes it will eventually become a mainstream kitchen appliance. Bloomberg Boot Camp, I'm Fred Fishkin.