We have smartphones, smartwatches — and now behold, smart garbage cans. The GeniCan prototype is a device that attaches to the inside of your garbage can and scans your discarded food packaging to compile your next shopping list straight to an app. The gadget even sorts your grocery list aisle-by-aisle before you get to the store. Currently seeking funding on website Indiegogo, U.S. inventor Rob Griffin plans to have the product ready for shipping in September. We spoke with the Connecticut-native on why chucking out trash requires ‘intelligence’.
What features does it have?
The GeniCan uses a barcode scanner, a microphone and other sensors to find out when an empty food item is discarded in to the garbage or recycling bin. It then connects via WiFi to our cloud service and stores the data of the items for viewing on a smartphone app.
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Why is the GeniCan better than the traditional pen-and-paper option for shopping lists?
Items can be added without touching a pen, phone or keyboard in less than a few seconds. Try adding raw chicken immediately after cutting it with any other option, you'll see the time savings. However, the GeniCan would also appeal because it’ll make the entire shopping experience efficient, from aisle-by-aisle sorting of your grocery list, coupon matching to the items on your list, and the ability to skip the store all together by using automatic delivery services like Amazon.
You said there is a microphone…
Yes, it allows the user to add items to their grocery list app by just talking to the trashcan. Simply hold the item in front of GeniCan's sensor and it will ask “What may I add to your list?”. The user’s answer is translated to text and added to the grocery list app.
Sounds like the garbage bin can do everything…
It can also tell the responsible person of the household that the garbage is full. We also have commercial plans to offer GeniCan in many service businesses where inventory for items could be made easier, like nail salons, hair salons, and others.