Enter the $100 Griffin Connected Coffee Maker, another product that combines smart home technology with a humble kitchen appliance. While not quite as radical perhaps as the company's upcoming $100 Connected Toaster, this automatic coffee pot boasts many of the same magical abilities.
On the surface, the Connected Coffee Maker looks like your average programmable java brewer manufacturers have sold for decades. The Griffin is more rounded, with pleasingly curved edges instead of the sharp lines and boxy corners evident on typical counter appliances .
A main section up top houses a filter funnel and ground coffee within. Below that sits a large glass carafe that's big enough to collect a full 12 cups (5 ounces per cup most likely) of coffee. In the back of the appliance and contained within its plastic chassis is the water reservoir. I'm not a fan of this type of tank setup since it tends to use a small lid and mouth. In my experience, the tiny opening makes for a tricky target to hit while pouring water into the reservoir.
What really sets the Connected Coffee Maker apart, though, are its smart capabilities, which are still relatively uncommon. Griffin claims you'll be able to control the coffee maker through a mobile app on your phone or tablet. According to the company, this will allow you to tweak brewing parameters such as coffee strength to your liking. You should also have the option to save your preferences for later.
Ultimately, sophisticated smarts do not a quality coffee pot make. If the machine can't brew drinkable java, it will suffer the same fate as the Mr. Coffee Smart Optimal Brew, a coffee machine that could only muster weak and flavorless cups of drip. Hopefully the $100 Griffin Connected Coffee Maker will demonstrate brewing performance as good as the similarly priced Braun BrewSense KF7150.
To get your hands on an appliance that brews delicious coffee plus has high-tech smart abilities, you'll have to spend a lot more money. Right now the best option that meets these criteria is the $329 Behmor Connected Coffee Brewer. That machine makes excellent coffee and is certified by the SCAA (Specialty Coffee Association of America) as a "Golden Cup" brewer.
The coffee maker at a glance
- Internal Bluetooth for wireless control
- Will link to companion app to schedule brewing and save your preferences
- Price: $100
- Availability: Q2 2017