Maybe the time has come to air our dirty laundry on the Internet?
Marathon Laundry intends to do that with a new washer-dryer combination appliance that figures out your habits and sends you notifications over the Internet. The company is one of many at the 2016 International CES (the big tech trade show in Las Vegas this week) that wants to convince you to buy smart appliances for smart phones and fully embrace the Internet of Things, making dumb objects smart and connected.
This machine has a Freescale i.MX6 quad-core CPU (based on the ARM Cortex-A9), a gigabyte of main memory, Yocto embedded Linux, and a multi-touch screen. It can even play an HD video if you want it to.
Do you think your laundry machine needs Internet access? At first blush, that’s silly. But consider Marathon’s argument:
The average U.S. household does six loads of laundry a week. People forget to switch their clothes from the washer to the dryer all of the time. But that’s over with Marathon Laundry, which uses the same tumbler for both washing and drying. You put your clothes in once, and that’s all.
And if you live in an apartment building or dorm, you have to fight for your right to get access to the laundry machines. Marathon Laundry allows you to check on its status, schedule loads, reserve times, and otherwise deal with laundry problems using a cloud-based, data-driven solution.
You can schedule the machine to wash clothes when the electricity is the cheapest. It will check rates on the Internet and determine the optimal time. You can also get the machine to learn your habits, like when you like to do laundry and the settings you prefer, so when you load your clothes into the laundry, your settings are already there.