(Pocket-lint) - It is customary for televisions or home entertainment tech to come out tops during the CES trade show in Las Vegas at the start of each year, but in January 2016, Samsung was talk of the town for its latest fridge freezer rather than its TVs.
The company created quite a buzz with its Family Hub Refrigerator and rightly so; it's a real innovation for a category that has remained static for many years now.
It is quite an extraordinary product both in concept and in the flesh and now it is available in the UK from stockists such as Currys, AO.com and John Lewis.
Why the Samsung Family Hub Refrigerator is so smart
The Family Hub has a trio of cameras inside the door of the upper unit that takes a photo of your food every time you shut the fridge, sending the end result to your smartphone. It also has a 21.5-inch Full HD Super AMOLED touchscreen display on the front that can be used in many life-enhancing ways.
For a start, you can interact with it using your mobile device and send pictures to the screen to display - in a similar way to pinning a photo to an older refrigerator using a magnet. And you can house an interactive calendar to keep track of family members.
Indeed, the family hub naming convention is well deserved it seems.
The screen can also be used to control audio playback, with stereo speakers also built into the fridge. And recipes can be pulled up as it connects to the internet. The web connectivity could eventually be used for grocery ordering too.
Allied with Mastercard in the US, users in the States can internet shop straight from the fridge, seeing what food or milk is required through the interior snapshot, and the items will be delivered to their door. There's no word yet on a UK partnership, but maybe one could be in the pipeline for future use?
Another great feature is that of screen mirroring. The fridge can pair with a Samsung Smart TV and a program being watched in the living room, say, can be transferred and picked up on the fridge instead.
All this and the appliance looks sexy on the exterior too, with a stainless steel build and plenty of storage inside.
We have to admit that, like many of the other attendees at CES in January, the Samsung Family Hub Refrigerator wowed us. In fact, it was one of the products we saw that we'd genuinely love to own ourselves.
The only sticking point is the price.
The full American refrigerator-sized version will set you back a whopping £4,499.99 - more than £2,500 more than an equivalent Samsung model without the screen. You can opt for a single-door fridge freezer version instead, but even that is expensive, costing a penny shy of £3,000.
Still, this sort of technology tends to bleed down the chain over time, so we hope it's not just a passing fad and all fridges in the future might be connected.