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Philips DCD778: An iPod dock to blight your kitchen

An iPod-docking, DVD-playing media station that fixes under a cabinet in your kitchen? Sounds great. What a shame it's eye-pokingly ugly

If you spend more time standing in your kitchen than you do sitting in your front room, maybe an under-cabinet iPod media station is something you'll find a use for. Certainly targeted at a niche group of users, the new Philips DCD778 Docking Entertainment System is a frighteningly unattractive piece of kit.

This precocious attempt to bring even more media to your culinary workstation incorporates an iPod dock, a DVD player, a 216mm (8.5-inch) widescreen display, a pair of 50mm speakers and -- wait for it -- an egg timer.

Many modern kitchens are graced with elegant fridges, designer toasters and beautiful ovens. Why, then, would any style-conscious member of the Ainsley Harriott For Prime Minister Society stoop low enough to commit the heinous crime of installing one of these brutally ugly appliances under a kitchen cupboard?

In the system's defence, it could be very useful while you're cooking. It has plenty of features: alongside a TV and radio tuner, it'll remind you when your bacon is about to burn and it'll entertain the kids while they eat. Today's 21st century whippersnappers won't care how aesthetically displeasing something is if they can watch Shrek 2 while they're wolfing down their Golden Grahams -- every 7-year-old's idea of early-morning nirvana.

So far there's no UK release date, so this unusual piece of kit is safely confined to the US, where it'll cost style-impaired American chefs $400 (£203). We'll let you know if Britain is likely to be threated by these in the future, but for now we can safely retain our stylish kitchens and bored children. -NL