Go to wedding registry sites like Blueprint Registry or Zola, and you’ll find Simplehuman trash cans. The stainless steel receptacles can cost as much as $200. Some let you step on a lever to open, others raise their lids when you wave your hand over a sensor. This year, the company introduced a new way to open a can: talk to it. Available in a $200, single-compartment version and a $250, dual-compartment option, the 58-liter can is one of the most expensive places to sling dripping takeout containers and moldy leftovers we’ve ever seen. And yet, we jumped at the chance to review a Simplehuman voice-activated trash can.
Do the can-can
For $140, you can get a 10.5-liter, single-compartment Simplehuman trash can that you open by pressing a lever on top of the can. That’s a lot of money for what is essentially a nice-looking garbage receptacle. Is $60 more for a voice-and-hand-activated version worth it? If you’re already blowing that kind of cash on something that gets grimy, it kind of is.
A voice-activated trash can sounds like a ridiculous product, but we actually found it to be pretty useful. It can be a little sensitive, but we’d rather have it open when we don’t need it than have it fail when our hands are full of greasy, grimy garbage. We don’t think there are any other voice-activated garbage cans, but iTouchless and Nine Stars both have motion-activated models. They should still be less germy but won’t help if your hands are full. There are a lot of moving parts to this trash can. Well, one, really, but it’s the part you really don’t want to fail. If it does stop responding to commands post-warranty, it will still work like an old-school trash can and should still look pretty fancy. For those already considering an expensive Simplehuman trash can, the voice-activated version isn’t that much pricier and could make your life a smidge easier.
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