The invention of touchscreens has revolutionised the way we interact with the world today and Miele has proven to be ahead of the pack in incorporating this technology into kitchen products with the launch of its new ArtLine series, where built-in appliances are available with no handles and direct sensor monitors. The sleek range is now available in the new Graphite Grey, as well as Obsidian Black and Brilliant White.
We chatted to Liam Gawne from Miele to find out more about the new range.
The ArtLine series of handleless appliances was released in June 2016. What has the response been thus far?
We have had an unbelievable response so far – customers and professionals alike seem to be utterly mesmerised with the clean and contemporary design of the ArtLine series. The handleless designs cater to the current trend of streamlined and uncluttered kitchens, with sleek lines and handleless cabinetry dominating. It is minimalism at its best.
What inspired you to create kitchen appliances without handles?
Perhaps one of the mainstay trends in modern kitchen design is the open-plan layout – where the kitchen merges with the living space. All family life revolves around food and as such the kitchen has become the most social area of the home. Open-plan layouts allow this room to become an integral part of the home’s living space – allowing the cook to socialise with others while preparing meals. Here, the kitchen, dining area and lounge all form one carefully designed area – maximising the floor space and the multipurpose functionality of the kitchen area.
Due to the popularity of open-plan layouts, it is important that the appliances add to the aesthetics of the area, as well as being functional. Miele has catered for this trend since it first introduced integrated appliances to the market, but it has taken it to a whole new level with the introduction of the ArtLine range. Where kitchens and living rooms meet, there is always a call for elegant, clear and puristic design, and with Miele’s new range we meet this market need more consistently than any other manufacturer. Handleless cabinetry is an increasingly popular way of creating a streamlined, minimal finish for the contemporary kitchen.
What, in your opinion, is the appeal of having an entire kitchen without handles?
Integrated kitchen appliances with no handles offer no visual barrier between the appliance and the surrounding cabinetry, creating a unified and timeless design. Thanks to its smooth glass fronts with integrated displays, the ArtLine range is sleek, flush and blends in with all types of cabinet fronts.
How does the touch sensor system work?
When opening any appliance in the ArtLine range, you simply need to tap lightly on a hidden sensor to unlock the door before it gently glides down into a horizontal position.
Could you tell us more about the different products featured in this range?
The handleless kitchen appliance range can be perfectly augmented using models from the current Miele portfolio, which also dispense with handles, switches and buttons. Appliances include ovens, coffee machines, hob units, warmer drawers, vacuum-sealing drawers, wine storage units, various refrigeration products and Knock2open dishwashers. On the latter, only available from Miele, the door opens automatically by gently tapping twice on the front.
We like the mention of how the ‘MTouch controls are reminiscent of a smartphone’. Could you elaborate on this?
Miele’s MTouch technology allows you to operate your Miele appliances in the same way that you operate your smartphone. A double cappuccino at the touch of a single button, finding the desired automatic programme on a steam cooker in an instant or selecting the operating mode and temperature in just a few simple steps before baking – this can all be done extremely elegantly and more simply than ever before with Miele’s new MTouch controls.
MTouch stands for a high-resolution TFT (thin-film transistor) display and it’s reminiscent of smartphones and tablet PCs. The menu is browsed by swiping or scrolling with the tip of a finger. Functions and menu options appear in brilliantly clear white letters on a black background. Colour elements are favoured for the display in the interests of improved clarity and a low-key approach – ‘OK’ to confirm a function is highlighted in green and the ‘Stop’ button is red.
In the future, do you plan to push for mobile applications that monitor/control the products?
Absolutely. Miele already has these functionalities in place overseas, but they are still to be introduced to the South African market. As early as 1998, Miele presented its first networked domestic appliances. Integration into bus systems and convenient touch display interfaces has represented high-end solutions for upmarket homes throughout Europe and America since 2008.
In South Africa, Miele Con@ctivity can be enjoyed – this is a system allowing automatic hob-to-hood communication. More recently, homeowners have even been able to hook up their rooftop PV installations to Miele domestic appliances, guaranteeing intelligent energy management and permitting the use of variable electricity tariffs (SmartStart). And, as smartphones become increasingly ubiquitous, the age of mobile appliance control is set to dawn.
What inspired you to introduce Graphite Grey and what do you think buyers will love about it?
In decorating circles, grey is the new must-have tone in the kitchen (and throughout the home) and it has been gaining momentum for quite some time now. It’s a more elegant neutral that is timeless and gives depth to subtle colours – making bold highlights pop. The new colour has been met with eager enthusiasm from all our clients.
For more information visit miele.co.za