GE's Cafe Series smart fridge is a wannabe barista (pictures)

You can program this Wi-Fi-enabled smart fridge to fire up a built-in K-Cup coffeemaker every morning.


Ry Crist

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1 of 13 Chris Monroe/CNET

GE Cafe Series French Door Refrigerator (CFE28USHSS)

This isn't a Keurig coffeemaker -- this is a GE refrigerator with a Keurig coffeemaker built into the water dispenser. Click through to see more of it.

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Keurig attachment

GE's newest Cafe Series fridges come with a Keurig brewing accessory that promises to brew your favorite type of K-Cup.

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Slide it in

To get started, just pop a K-Cup inside, then slide the brewer into place on the right side of the water dispenser, where GE plumbed a second line specifically for hot water.

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LCD touchscreen

The fridge controls come by way of an LCD touchscreen. When you slide the Keurig accessory in place, the coffeemaking screen will automatically pop up. Just select the size of your beverage, then tap "Next."

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Heating up

The brewer will take a few minutes to heat up. When it's ready to brew, this knob will glow red, and you'll give it a counter-clockwise turn to start the coffee pouring. If you want to speed things up, you can use a companion app to start heating the water remotely, or set it to heat up on a schedule each morning so things are ready to go as soon as you get out of bed.

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Hot water pours straight through the Keurig accessory and the K-Cup inside. The result: a hot cup of coffee (or tea, or cocoa, or whatever kind of K-Cup you keep in the pantry).

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Precise Fill

The fridge also has a feature called Precise Fill. With it, you'll use the touchscreen to tell the water dispenser the exact amount of water you want it to dispense.

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In action

We tested out Precise Fill a bunch of times, and it always proved accurate. The only catch: You have to hold the dispenser paddle down the whole time.

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Inside of the fridge you'll find 27.8 cubic feet of total storage space, along with a "TempSelectZone" that has its own thermostat. You can dial it to 32, 34 or 36 degrees F -- each of which is color-coded with LED lights that shine whenever you open the doors to remind you of what setting it's on.

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Cooling performance

Speaking of color coding, this heat map shows the average temperature of each region of the fridge during a 72-hour test at the default setting of 37 degrees (we dialed that TempSelectZone down to 32). Everything looks pretty good here, with temperatures below 40 degrees in the body of the fridge.

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Minute by minute

Here's the complete graph of that same test. Those spikes are our regularly scheduled door openings, which help simulate everyday usage. The fridge didn't have a problem keeping things down at a reasonable temperature.

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Coldest setting

We also tested the fridge out at its coldest setting of 34 degrees. Performance was, unsurprisingly, a little bit colder. We also brewed coffee twice a day during this test to see if it would affect the performance at all -- it didn't.

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Price point

This Cafe Series model retails for $3,300, and comes in both standard-depth and counter-depth models. You can read all about it in CNET's full review.

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