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Home appliances may receive high-tech upgrades

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Albany/HV: Home appliances may receive high-tech upgrades
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Big appliances may be considered the lowest tech devices in your home, but some companies are hoping to change that. Adam Balkin looks back at this year's Consumer Electronics Show.

If LG has its way, you will soon be controlling and communicating with your refrigerator, oven, washer and dryer via text message.

Randy Overton/LG Electronics
"Really what's more intuitive and simpler than texting to your appliances is this new HomeChat app allows you to do that. I can actually start my washer by saying 'ok, start laundry' and it starts up remotely," explained Randy Overton, LG Electronics. "When we do actually introduce this, we're going to have plenty of key words it'll recognize, but it's going to be in our normal vernacular or slang that we use everyday."

Dacor decided the best way to bring its Discovery oven and range into the 21st century is to include Android tablets to help you better control the appliance, and help the appliance better control you.

"This lets you pull up live YouTube video of Martha Stewart or Rachael Ray talking to you about 'hi, here are the five things you need to do when cooking lamb.' You want to have your favorite recipes in there, we all have our greasy pieces of paper with grandma's matzoh ball soup recipe, well you could have that electronically loaded," said Chuck Huebner, Dacor.

Whirlpool's concept Interactive Cooktop is the combination of a stove and a giant touchscreen computer.

"It'll only heat where the pan is touching the surface and nothing else that's the beauty of inductive technology. You're able to call up a recipe right on the cooking surface, it'll interact with everything you have in your fridge or pantry, and check off ingredients that you have so that you know you're ready to make the dish," said Monica Teague Clark, Whirpool.

The surface also allows you to check your social networks, your Evite lists, and even take phone calls.

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