Whirlpool® has unveiled their latest product, the “Smart Front Load Washer with 6th Sense Live™ Technology” that’s connected to the Internet.
Blimey! Privacy advocates will be up in arms again. Didn’t Whirlpool read George Orwell’s “1984”?
Coincidentally (and this isn’t mentioned in the book), 1984 was the last year a device rolled of the belt which lasted for more than just 5 years.
I’m all pro-innovation, … but our most trusted household device - the one machine which surely knows our dirtiest secrets - connected to the Internet?
Washy-Doodle 2.0 or not, … I wouldn’t want to see my machine tweet about skid-marks, crusty socks or the extra cycles it had put-in to clean these flatulence beaten undies.
Thank you sir, but NO sir! I refuse to air my laundry in public!
Here’s an idea Whirlpool: Your devices used to last for 10 or 15 years before. In some cases even longer than most marriages. So why not spend the extra R&D budget on figuring out why we have to go through more washing machines than spouses in our life.
Also, I blame your too many features as part of the reasons that “do us apart” before death. Instead of spending quality time on a family picnic (or roughing up the linen with our boo) we stress about:
- having to update the firmware
- downloading the latest iPhone app to monitor calcium build-up,
- worry about configuring the firewall rules to prevent hackers or botnets taking over the laundry (manual says nothing about which udp/tcp ports I should open btw.)
- configuring whether the device is allowed to post status updates about crusty socks on our facebook timeline
- knowing that I can no longer pass the machine on to my kids when they move out, simply because it’s going to look older than an iPhone 4 (not to mention it’s filthy browsing history which really kids should be protected from no matter what their age)
- don’t even get me started on the NSA and dragnet surveillance (or do Whirlpool machines ship with the TOR onion router to protect my privacy? no? I thought not!)
- having to read the terms of a service-level-agreement and having to monitor these terms – where will it all end?
And between you and me, I know that when you sell me something called “CloudWash”, my stinky socks won’t really be cleaned in the cloud. They remain right there in my basement. (or are is the cloud where my socks have disappeared to all along?)
I also understand your desire to remain modern and relevant dear Whirlpool. But I’m not asking you to sell me a fucking “experience”. My expectation of you hasn’t changed since 1988. Back then you showed me to hide my tracks from my parents after a heavy night partying with the lads. This was our little secret. But now you’re asking me to connect you to the Internet? Sorry, but my trust doesn’t extend this far. You just know too much!
Here is what I want from you Whirlpool, …. (and I’m willing to pay you premium $$$ for this):
- a device which does one thing but does it well. Guess that kind of expectation is normal for anything we consider “utility”?
- Also I want my washing done with the same device for the next 15 years, or the length of my marriage (please phrase it as “whichever lasts longer” in the warranty).
I’m off to the basement now to read the manual’s section on “device orchestration” … seems this model isn’t even IPv6 ready nor does it support SDN (grumble).
Have a great Sunday & keep it clean.