August 11, 2005 Oliso announced the release of its Touch&Glide; iron earlier this week, claiming the new iron would redefine the experience of ironing. Well let's hope so, cos we're pretty sure there aren't many humans on the planet that are all that keen on ironing as a hobby or past-time. One of the aspects of the new iron which really caught our eye was the iron's touch-sensitive handle which activates its AutoLift system, automatically lifting the iron off of the fabric when the handle is released. It lowers itself onto the fabric or an ironing board whenever you touch its handle. Now that's clever, though it does beg the question as to why it has taken so long to think of this. General Electric introduced the electric iron as we know it in 1892, giving us 113 years to think about it. When Seimens introduced the company's shirt ironing machine, we calculated it would save people at least 40 minutes a week. We reckon the Touch&Glide; is a winner, as it focusses on usability and performance, claiming users of the iron have reduced ironing time by one third.
Oliso CEO, Ehsan Alipour, said, "We are very excited to see the rollout of our first product. I think our innovation will redefine the experience of ironing."
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The Touch&Glide; iron uses patented technologies that virtually eliminate the need to lift an iron or set it up on its unstable end. The iron's touch-sensitive handle activates its AutoLift system, automatically lifting the iron off of the fabric when the handle is released. It lowers itself onto the fabric or an ironing board whenever you touch its handle.
Oliso's Touch&Glide; iron is the result of three years of research and hundreds of prototypes. Its design reflects feedback received from everyday iron users. "We are dedicated to true innovation and making people's lives easier by observing them, listening to their needs and solving their problems," said Alipour. "We have built an iron that is unsurpassed in performance, ease of use, safety and efficiency." Many users have said they can cut-down ironing time by up to one-third.
"We knew we had a great product when we saw people literally jump when touching the handle, and when our test users refused to return our prototypes. One of them even referred to it as her pet."
The Touch&Glide; is perhaps the most significant innovation in irons since the introduction of steam. It began as a Stanford University graduate school project with most early prototypes built in a basement of a San Francisco Mission Street building.
Oliso is a privately held San Francisco based firm composed of researchers, designers, and engineers with a strong background in quality manufacturing. The company regularly invites people from all walks of life, including professionals, to touch and test each one of their prototypes. Oliso's design philosophy is that "exceptional form follows innovative function."View gallery - 4 images