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LG gets connected

First there was the electric light bulb, now there is…the internet-enabled refrigerator. That’s the rather excited claim of LG Electronics, which has just launched a full range of internet-enabled home appliances, all of which can be controlled via the ‘fridge.

First there was the electric light bulb, now there is…the internet-enabled refrigerator. That’s the rather excited claim of LG Electronics, which has just launched a full range of internet-enabled home appliances, all of which can be controlled via the ‘fridge.

LG first demonstrated the internet refrigerator at GITEX 2001, now it is launching internet washing machines, air conditioners and microwave ovens as well. The appliances are being marketed under the “NeoCulture” campaign.

“LG has taken a bold step in bringing the future of living standards to the Middle East and Africa today,” said M B Shin, president of LG Electronics MEA. “By 2005, over 100 million homes are expected to be using networked digital appliances and LG believes a large proportion of these will be in the Middle East and Africa.”

While all the appliances can operate as stand-alone devices, the refrigerator is the central hub, with a 15.1 inch touch-pad screen with built-in video camera acting as the front end. The refrigerator can also act as a server, allowing people to check the status of their home appliances over the internet and perform some functions remotely.

LG has developed a proprietary communication protocol for its home network appliances, the Living network Control Protocol (LcCP), which has been designed for home appliances that exchange small amounts of data and require minimum control.

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