In terms of Amazon products that work with Alexa, we’ve seen smart watches, microwave ovens, wall outlets, and now a smart soap dispenser.
It’s useful to some extent, but it’s also a reminder that not everything has to be smart. Let’s analyze why.
The latest Alexa gadget
So what does a smart soap dispenser do? Well, it detects motion to deliver some hands-free soap, has LED dots at the top that count the time, and can connect with an echo to remind you that 20 seconds is the time to wash your hands.
Our favorite thing about Amazon’s Smart Soap Dispenser isn’t Alexa integration or even the design – come on, it looks like a modern soap bottle – it’s automatic soap dispensing. Keep your hand under the nozzle and the soap is dispensed. It is about offering the convenience of a public toilet in the cleaning of our apartment. And whether you’re alone or in a crowded home bathroom, it’s nice not to have to push down to pump the soap.
A small motion detector under the nozzle recognizes the palm of your hand and then the device dispenses a predetermined amount of soap based on how close your hand is. At first, we held our hand quite close and were surprised by a pea-sized amount, but by holding the hand lower we will have dispensed more soap.
You are probably wondering what makes this device smart, and this is the top of its lid. It has a ring of circular white LED lights that count for 20 seconds. This is the minimum time recommended by the CDC to wash your hands. When the soap dispenser detects motion, an Echo smart speaker can play a fragment of a song for 20 seconds. It works in tandem with the lights on high to make sure you wash for the right amount of time. There is also a musical note with a line running through it, which you can tap to disable the Alexa routine.
The promised magic of the Smart Soap Dispenser – the Amazon Echo integration – wasn’t that easy to set up. It took about three attempts for an apartment full of Echos (Generation IV Echos and Dots, a Show 5, a Show 8 and a Show 10) to successfully find the Smart Soap Dispenser. And while the Alexa app walks you through all the steps and even creates the routine, it’s an extended setup for a smart device. We also found that routine difficult to activate, and while at times it worked and successfully played a track, other times it didn’t. Fortunately, the countdown LEDs on the top work separately and we haven’t encountered any problems with those. Every couple of times we saw the lights and then heard nothing from the nearby echo.
The really smart supplement is that the smart soap dispenser can alert you when you are running out of soap. It can ping you via the Alexa app or an email to let you know it’s running out, and you can even have Amazon intelligently order more soap for you. You can also consider the extra amount of soap you have to refill the dispenser before you need to order more.
This feature is pretty useful and Amazon actually sells the dispenser with soap packets.
- Method Sea Minerals 34-ounce Smart Soap Dispenser ($ 60.98, originally $ 61.98; amazon.com)
- Ms. Meyer’s 33-ounce Geranium Smart Soap Dispenser ($ 63.38; amazon.com)
- Smart Soap Dispenser with 24-ounce Seventh Generation Tangerine and Grapefruit ($ 73.52, originally $ 78.33; amazon.com)
However, it gets expensive fast, and none of these packages include our favorite tea tree hand soap.
You will refill the smart soap dispenser through a door behind a rubber door. The strange thing is that this is a Micro USB port, a port being phased out. Most of Amazon’s other devices use a proprietary or USB-C jack.
Yes, Amazon includes a Micro USB to USB-A cable in the box and you won’t need to charge it often, but it seems like an odd port choice for a smart home gadget coming out in 2021. The upside is battery life is quite long; Amazon says it should last three months. We’ve had it for nearly a month and haven’t seen any loss of potency.
Amazon’s Smart Soap Dispenser is a truly unique product, but ultimately niche and expensive – $ 54.99 for a soap dispenser is a lot of money, and it doesn’t even have a truly unique design. Unless you’re an Alexa-obsessed family or just want a 20-second physical reminder to wash your hands, we finally broadcast this gadget.
For those who want a soap dispenser, we will look for one that is automatic and with a refill line inside. You don’t want to be like us and fill it up only to find it will overflow when you put the lid on. This $ 28.48 vending machine with a viewing window to see the soap level looks like an excellent option.
[ https://bbcbreakingnews.com/2021/10/05/do-you-need-a-smart-soap-dispenser-we-tested-one-to-find-out/ https://d26toa8f6ahusa.cloudfront.net/wp-content/uploads/2021/07/30214746/a-quiet-place-part-2-bigs-16.pdf