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每日英語跟讀 Ep.819: 科技產品 進攻你家廚房 Smart Kitchens A Tough Sell, But Tech Tries

· 每日跟讀單元 Daily English

每日英語跟讀 Ep.819: Smart Kitchens A Tough Sell, But Tech Tries

On a recent Saturday night, German Salazar made chicken tacos for his friends while they chatted with him in his kitchen. Occasionally, he interrupted the conversation to talk to another friend: Google.

最近的一個周六晚上,傑曼.薩拉札在他的廚房裡邊和朋友聊天,邊替他們做雞肉塔可餅吃。偶爾,他也會中斷對話,去和另一個朋友說話:谷歌。

Salazar was speaking to Google Home, the artificially intelligent speaker living on his kitchen counter. “Hey Google, set a timer for 20 minutes,” he said, to activate a countdown for when the chicken would be cooked and ready for shredding.

薩拉札是和他廚房流理台上的Google Home說話,它是個人工智慧喇叭。他說:「嘿,谷歌,設定一個20分鐘計時」,好啟動一個倒數計時,這時間可將雞煮熟,拿來切絲。

At first, Salazar’s friends snickered when he talked to the speaker. But after a few bottles of wine, everyone began grilling Google Home with questions and requests: “How much did Jamie Lee Curtis make in ‘True Lies’?” and “Tell me a joke.”

最初,薩拉札對著喇叭講話時,朋友一旁竊笑。但幾瓶葡萄酒下肚後,每個人都開始拿問題考問Google Home,「潔美李寇帝斯在電影《魔鬼大帝:真實謊言》的片酬多少?」,「說個笑話吧」。

For many people, the kitchen is the center of the home and a locus for interactions that go beyond preparing and eating food. Now tech companies and appliance makers, aiming to deepen their relationships with customers, are increasingly targeting the room that is synonymous with togetherness.

對許多人而言,廚房是家的中心 ,是除了準備食物和吃東西,一個彼此互動的場所。現在,意在加深與客戶關係的高科技公司和家電製造商,正越來越將目標瞄準與親密感畫上等號的這個空間。

Household brands like Whirlpool, Samsung and Bosch are racing against tech behemoths like Google and Amazon to dominate the kitchen with internet-connected appliances and cooking gadgets that include refrigerators embedded with touch screens, smart dishwashers and connected countertop screens with artificially intelligent assistants that react to spoken commands.

諸如惠而浦、三星和博世等家電品牌正與谷歌和亞馬遜這些科技巨頭競爭,冀望以自家連接網路的電器和烹飪設備主宰廚房,這些裝具包括內建觸控螢幕的冰箱,智慧洗碗機,以及內有人工智慧助理,會對口頭命令作反應,與網路連接的流理台螢幕。

Yet the “smart kitchen” remains a tough sell. With the kitchen often a hub for families and friends, habits there can be hard to change. And many people see the kitchen and mealtimes as a haven from their otherwise always-connected lifestyle. Only 5 percent of U.S. households own smart appliances today, up from 3 percent in 2014, according to the research firm Parks Associates.

不過,智慧廚房仍然行銷不易。廚房往往是家人和朋友相處的核心空間,因此廚房習慣很難改變。此外,許多人將廚房和用餐時間視為避風港,希望能暫時逃離永遠和網路連接的生活方式。根據「帕克斯聯合」研究公司的調查,現今只有5%的美國家庭擁有智慧家電,2014年則為3%。

“Will we see a reinvention of the kitchen like we saw in the living room?” said Michael Wolf, a tech analyst who hosts a podcast and a conference about the smart kitchen. “I don’t think it will happen overnight. There’s going to be a lot of skepticism.”

身為科技產品分析師兼播客,並主持一項智慧廚房會議的邁可.沃爾夫說:「我們會見到廚房也像客廳那樣被改造嗎?我不認為這會在一夕之間發生。人們會有許多疑慮。」

Apart from their fears of disrupting the rhythms and patterns in the heart of the home, people may be hesitant to incorporate smart devices into their kitchens because of the costs of maintaining such appliances, which are often difficult to repair and use expensive components like touch screens. They also may worry about longevity: A touch-screen refrigerator may look modern today, but who knows how dated it may appear in five years?

除了擔心可能擾亂這個家庭中心點的節奏和模式,維修這些家電的成本,也可能令人對是否該將智慧裝置整合到廚房中猶豫不決。這些家電通常很難修理,且使用的是昂貴的組件,如觸控螢幕。人們或許還擔心使用壽命:觸控螢幕冰箱今天可能看來很摩登,誰又知道五年後會顯得多麼過時?

And with many smart kitchen appliances incorporating internet connections, cameras or microphones, digital privacy has become a concern.

隨著許多智慧廚房家電納入了網路連接、相機或麥克風,數位隱私權也成為令人關切的議題。 

Source article: https://paper.udn.com/udnpaper/POH0067/326292/web/

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