First there was the Keurig, which spawned countless imitators. The $400 Juicero thankfully shut down. And now another victim of its own frivolity is also shutting down–the Teforia tea infuser. According to the manufacturer it is a “groundbreaking”
machine-learning tea infusion device
and its features include:
- proprietary tea pods called Sips that cost betwen $1-6, around 2 servings per pod
- each pod has a RFID chip that enables the device to read the type of tea and therefore length, temperature, amount of water etc needed for brewing
- connects via bluetooth to an app which gives information such as the last time the user brewed a type of tea and most importantly, allows the user to buy more tea pods
- connects via wifi so it can be updated with new brewing recipes
- $1000 for the classic model — now apparently discounted to a bargain at $200
It was doomed from the start. An actual British writer at gizmodo reviewed the infuser and the article is a must-read because the device sounded comically useless. It failed the taste test of earl grey vs tazo brand; not that tazo is any good, mind. And as for english breakfast, otherwise known as “tea” in the UK, I’ll let the reviewer describe it:
The best cup of tea on Earth is the one Mum makes when I arrive in our kitchen from the long flight home, or, if that’s not in reach, one that reminds me of that. The Daybreak reminded me more of the utterly depressing tea I’d buy at the cafe in Heathrow bus station
It’s yet again another Silicon Valley invented solution for a non-existent problem. A tea-making machine that costs the same as an iphone X? Each serving costing a few dollars? Plus tea that tastes like, well, an American made it? Are they having a laugh.
Americans need to stop trying to make tea, they don’t even know how to use use the term cuppa correctly. It’s not a “cuppa of tea” mate.
Automated tea-making machines are not new. There have been teasmades since the 1930s. Swan still makes clock radio teasmads which can be bought at Argos for less than £60. Okay, no fancy app or RFID pods and you have to supply your own teabag. But with a big box of PG or Yorkshire tea costing a few quid (or dollars), if someone really wants a machine to make their tea for them, get a teasmade instead of these not!smart smart devices.