People want products that help save the planet, says Whirlpool

Consumers want products that use less energy and save them money, according to a new survey by Whirlpool.

The appliance giant conducted a survey of more than 2,000 UK consumers, which showed that half of them valued innovations that use less energy, 40% were looking for a lower carbon footprint or products that would save them money (40%), or time (25%).

When it came to home appliances, more than half of those polled (55%) said they wanted sustainable products that did not compromise on size or capacity.

The survey also found that consumers are prepared to change their behaviour in order to reduce their environmental impact. Three-quarters of those surveyed (74%) were reducing their use of single-use plastics, more than half (54%) said they planned to do so in the next year. The same number said they wanted to reduce their water consumption, while almost two-thirds (65%) said they were already reducing their weekly laundry loads, with 41% saying they wanted to decrease that even further.

Commenting on the findings, Pam Klyn, vice-president of communications, public affairs and sustainability at Whirlpool Corporation, said: “At Whirlpool Corporation, our approach to innovation brings people what they want and need to improve their lives, both at home and for the environment

“For example, a lot of companies are designing products that connect many different ’things’ in the home, but they aren’t all meaningful to consumers’ everyday lives. We visualise a home ecosystem with a conscience, a mix of smart home appliances and emerging technologies, that deliver energy, cost and time savings.”

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The company said that it sees the potential for connected products, but with only a small number of smart features enabled.

Vice-president of engineering and innovation Shree Dandekar added: “When we talk about smart appliances, it’s not just about connecting different appliances to each other or to phones and home assistants, it’s about creating useful ecosystems that connect with utilities and other services to make consumers’ lives run more smoothly and have less environmental impact. For instance, smart washers and dryers, as well as dishwashers, can be set to run in non-peak hours to save on electric costs while delivering the product performance consumers depend upon from Whirlpool.”

Commenting on what survey respondents said about the steps they were taking to reduce their own environmental impact, Ron Voglewede, Whirlpool Corporation’s global sustainability director, said: “It’s encouraging to see people taking action. Our appliances sit at the heart of homes, and when thinking about society’s biggest challenges, we have an opportunity to play a unique role. From increasing the quantities of recycled or recyclable materials in our products, to working with sustainable suppliers and sending less waste to landfill. Innovating in this way has been part of our DNA for more than 110 years.” 

Whirlpool pointed to innovations such as its 6th Sense technology that uses intelligent sensors to adapt the washing time and temperature according to the size and type of load, helping consumers to reduce their carbon footprint and save money on their energy bills.

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