Technology has a knack for over-complicating things – take making a cup of tea for example. One unfortunate chap with the dream of being able to boil a brew on demand managed to turn what should have been a two-minute job into a 11-hour opus, after trying to set up his new Wi-Fi-enabled kettle.
Mark Rittman, a data specialist from Hove, UK, decided to take his new £100 Smarter iKettle for a spin on Tuesday morning. The plan was to link the kettle to his Amazon Echo so he could instruct it to boil with a voice command.
Unfortunately, Rittman's new gadget refuse to play nice with the rest of his smart home tech, thus beginning a day-long endeavour during which Rittman essentially had to hack the kettle so it would work as he envisioned.
Three hours into his efforts, Pittman's WiFi base station forced a recalibration, causing it to reset and the kettle to become lost on the network.
At 11am, and still without a cup of tea in hand, there was a glimmer of hope as Rittman's network appeared to detect the kettle. Sadly it turned out to be a false alarm, and Ritmann had to recalibrate the device for a second time.
After several hours of work, Pittman got to the root of the problem. As it turned out, the Smarter iKettle didn't support basic smart home software like Apple HomeKit or Samsung's SmartThings, meaning it couldn't communicate with Amazon's smart speaker. As a result, Pittman was forced to "hack" together integration himself, a process as complicated as it sounds.
It wasn't until after 7pm that night that the kettle finally began responding to voice commands – although at that moment Pittman's smart lighting system decided it needed an update. "Well the kettle is back online and responding to voice control, but now we're eating dinner in the dark while lights download a firmware update," he tweeted.
At midnight, Pittman posted a video showing him successfully instructing Amazon's virtual assistant to boil his kettle. While many congratulated him for his efforts, others were quick to point out that a regular kettle would have done the job in a lot less time.
Indeed, sometimes the old ways are the best.