Whirlpool appliances can ‘talk’ to other brands’ products

Appliance manufacturer Whirlpool has announced that its connected appliances will now be able to “talk” to other brands.

The company claims to be one of the first manufacturers in Europe to make the move into interconnectivity with other products outside of its own portfolio.

Whirlpool connected appliances now feature IFTTT (If This, Then That) compatibility. This is a cloud-based web service that makes it possible for users to connect to a wide range of apps, services and products.

IFTTT works by linking the specific functionalities, called triggers, of different connected devices, which are made available on the IFTTT platform.

It has launched three new appliance channels on IFTTT, which offer end users specific capabilities to help create a “unique and innovative” solution for home automation.

The new capability will allow the brand’s 6th Sense Live range of appliances to communicate with other connected products, such as connected thermostats.

Its range of connected laundry and refrigeration products will soon be joined by dishwashing and cooking, it said.

Marco Signa (pictured), connectivity strategy senior manager at Whirlpool EMEA, commented: “Imagine setting your Whirlpool fridge to a low-energy vacation mode, and having it automatically tell your thermostat to turn down the heating. Or imagine that your home’s solar energy system tells your washing machine to start a cycle when it is collecting enough power on a sunny day. And what about having your stereo play your favourite party playlist to let you know the wine is chilled. When you start to link together different services and products, the combinations are limitless and encompass everything from essential ways to automate daily chores to relatively small things that make the connected home feel more personal, fun and responsive.”

Mr Signa added: “As more devices become capable of connecting to the rapidly-growing Internet of Things, we believe that consumer interest and adoption will depend on having technologies that genuinely help to make life easier and more pleasurable.

“Key to this, is the ability for connected products and services to work easily together to form a home ecosystem. While the possibilities are very exciting, the burden cannot be on the user to learn to use and connect these technologies. It is the responsibility of leading manufacturers and software companies to break down the barriers and design for seamless and intuitive interoperability and use. This is why Whirlpool has already announced partnerships with other industry leaders including IBM, Amazon and Nest, and why we are taking this initiative still further through IFTTT compatibility.”