Haier’s R2-D2 fridge is the droid we’re looking for…

June 9th, 2015

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Over the weekend, the Appliances Online team learned of something pretty amazing that recently arrived at a technology show in Japan.

Appliance manufacturer Haier, known in Australia for their simple and affordable fridges, freezers, washers and dryers, revealed something a bit out of the ordinary on 2 June – a life-sized remote-controlled replica of R2-D2™, the legendary (if largely unintelligible) Star Wars™ character, complete with movable head, lights and sounds.

But this isn’t just a novelty robot – after all, dedicated fans have been building movie-accurate replicas for years (just visit any pop culture convention to see one or more patrolling the floor).

r2d2 fridge haiersource: gizmodo

No, Haier’s R2-D2™ replica doubles up as a FRIDGE, capable of bringing chilled drinks straight to you!

Check out the video:

Unfortunately, I can’t speak Japanese, but according to The Asahi Shimbun, one notable quote from this presentation by Haier Asia president and CEO, Yoshiaki Ito, is “This is no joke; we will really be selling this.”

r2d2 fridge haier insidesource: ITmedia LifeStyle

<nerd alert> I wonder if the Haier team were inspired by the Wraith Squadron novel series (part of the sadly-missed Star Wars™ Expanded Universe), wherein an R2 droid named Vape is modified by his owner to dispense chilled beer with the verbal command of “Vape, cold one.” </nerd alert>

While the awesome factor of having a robot serving you drinks cannot be overstated, don’t expect one of these units to completely replace your bar fridge. The prototype shown is reportedly only large enough to hold three 500ml bottles, or six 350ml cans. It also operates on a battery that you’d need to keep charged, and uses thermoelectric Peltier cooling rather than a compressor, making it good at chilling and serving drinks but not so good at providing long-term storage.

Haier is reportedly planning to start rolling out these fridges for sale in 2016. No confirmed details yet on pricing (the media’s general prediction appears to be “high”) or whether it’s coming to Australia though.

While you wait, why not invest in a bar fridge to keep your drinks cold, and enjoy a relaxing beverage of your choice while listening to your favourite cantina band on a set of Star Wars™ themed headphones?

Mark joined Appliances Online in November 2011 and has since learned more than he ever expected to know about appliances. He enjoys looking for new and unusual ways for to solve everyday problems using typical household appliances. When he’s not toiling at the desks of Appliances Online and Big Brown Box, he tries to find time to write the next big bestseller and draw satirical cartoons, but is too easily distracted by TV, music and video games. Mark’s favourite appliance is the Dyson Groom Tool, as he loves the concept of vacuuming your dog. Google+

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