Now even your wine habit can get connected to the Internet of Things
With everything from your front door to your washing machine getting smarter thanks to embedded computer technology, it seems it was only a matter of time for something else to get some smarts — your wine dispenser. That's exactly what's coming down the pike if a new Kickstarter campaign for a product called Somm is successful.
Somm is a countertop wine dispenser that gets filled with a 2.25-liter cartridge of wine, which is the equivalent of three bottles. The cartridge is called a Sylo. The makers of the device told us that they employ a special pump that is normally used for medical-grade blood extraction to remove wine from the Sylo, which keeps the remaining wine fresh. This is a major benefit over needing to worry about removing the oxygen from bottles with a variety of gizmos if you don't finish them. It means you could have a glass of pinot noir one night, then switch over to white for brunch the next day without any degradation to the wines.
The Sylos are also embedded with technology that allows the dispensing unit to know exactly what wine is inside, and adjust the temperature and aeration controls accordingly.
Of course, like all devices that are part of the Internet of Things these days, Somm also works through an app on your phone to give you detailed information about your wines, let you know how much is left in a Sylo, and make suggestions for new bottles as you rate what you like and what you don't. Should you want one of the recommended bottles, the company will ship new Sylos straight to your door.
As for the wines, the company will be starting with 30 chosen from vintners around the world, and will eventually be expanding the line to include hundreds of choices.
The cost of wine will be anywhere from US$15-150 per Sylo.
While this can all seem like a bit of overkill to enjoy a bottle of wine, the masses certainly seem to be taking to it. The Somm launched on April 7 and in its first few hours raised over half the fundraising goal of $100,000. It still has over a month left in its campaign, so it's looking quite likely that the device will fund.
Somms can be snagged for $199. After the campaign is over they will cost $299. The company is also making Sylos available for special Kickstarter prices which range from $15-120 per Sylo.
Of course, this is just a Kickstarter campaign, so it's important to remember that you're sponsoring an idea, not really ordering a product. Still, Synek, the company behind the Somm, has already delivered on a beer-dispensing system for which it raised nearly $650,000 on Kickstarter in 2014, so it would seem you're in good hands if you decide to be a backer.