The GE Water Station is designed to pre-mix detergent and water to save on soap.

Chris Monroe/CNET

Able to automatically pre-mix detergent, plus sense fabric type and load size, GE's Water Station is no basic washer.

This top load washing machine detects the type and quantity of clothing you drop in its drum. It then smartly combines soap with water in ratios it decides will work best. The appliance also dispenses only enough mixed detergent it deems will be most effective. The remaining cleaning liquid is saved, with GE claiming that the washer can stretch up to two months of laundry from a standard detergent bottle.

You can start a water flow at the back of the drum to turn the washer into a sink.

Chris Monroe/CNET

A washer that's a sink too

GE calls its new washing machine the "Water Station" for a reason. The unit, specifically model GTW750CSL, lets you also use it as a laundry room utility sink. Activating the Water Station function kicks off a steady stream of water into the tub. That flow of H2O is to tackle tasks such as pretreating garments with tough stains, rinsing the outside muddy shoes or simply washing your hands.

It's not as radical an approach as the Samsung Activewash which actually has a sink up top separate from the main drum below. Samsung pushed the laundry envelope further with its impressive but shockingly expensive FlexWash machine. The product offers two washing chambers that can operate independently and simultaneously.

Laundry over Wi-Fi

Also on board is support for GE's mobile laundry app. This paired with the washing machine's Wi-Fi radio let you start, stop and monitor the Water Station from afar. The washer will also respond to vocal commands you issue to Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. Likewise users can set up Amazon Dash to order laundry supplies electronically whenever stocks run low.

Outlook and availability

The GE Water Station series of washing machines should arrive in stores by early September 2017. You'll have the choice of two versions, a $799 white model (GE GTW750CSLWS) and a $899 "diamond gray" option (GE GTW750CSLDG)