Balcony BBQ? The LotusGrill heats up fast but produces very little smoke

Whether or not you can put a grill on your balcony depends on a lot of factors. Your state and city may be fine with it, but your condo or homeowners association might have restrictions. If you are allowed, you could soon hear your neighbors knocking, thanks to the meaty, smoky smells wafting into their places. If you don’t want to smoke your neighbors out, you could try the LotusGrill.

The battery-operated (it takes four AAs) charcoal grill was on display at the 2017 International Home and Housewares Show. It comes in a variety of sizes, but they all work on the same basic principle. Using lighter gel, similar to the kind that fuels sterno candles, you can get the grill going in about three minutes, Mischa Ohler, the company’s technical developer, told Digital Trends.

The grill is comprised of a double-walled bowl, stainless steel inner bowl, ignition plate, charcoal container and lid, and the grill top. The charcoal chamber’s lid prevents the juices from dripping onto the charcoal, which causes smoke. The outer bowl doesn’t get hot, so you can put the grill on virtually any surface. To control the temperature of the grill, you turn the knob, which speeds up or slows down the fan. The grill can get up to about 660 degrees Fahrenheit (350 degrees Celsius), Ohler says. The grill has an optional lid, which can make it a bit more versatile. Ohler says that with the lid, he’s made things such as pizza, bread, and muffins using the grill.

The company has been making the grills for the German market for the past few years and the device is now for sale in the U.S. at Sur La Table for $200.  Right now, the only model available is the smallest size, which weighs about eight pounds and has a grill diameter of nearly 14 inches. Because it uses charcoal, you definitely don’t want to use the LotusGrill indoors, but its light weight and compact size make it a pretty good beach or camping option.

Amazon Sur La Table Walmart

Health & Fitness

In search of the fountain of youth, beauty companies turn to tech

Beauty tech is a fairly new concept, but at CES 2019, companies such as Olay, L’Oreal, and Neutrogena were fully embracing it with all kinds of gadgets that promise to give you glowing skin.
Smart Home

Thinking of buying an Instant Pot? Here's what you need to know

The Instant Pot is a powerful kitchen appliance that does everything from pressure cook to to slow cook to steam. Heck, you can even make yogurt in it. Here's all you need to know about the magic device.
Smart Home

Want a smarter home? Ditch the keys with these great smart locks

A good smart lock should offer a combination of security and convenience. Fortunately, these devices keep your home protected, your family safe, and your belongings secure from possible intruders.
Smart Home

The best sous vide machines cook your food perfectly, every single time

Want to make four-star meals from the comforts of your own kitchen? Here are the best sous vide machines available right now, whether you prefer simple immersion circulators or something more complex.
Smart Home

Busted: Facebook Portal gets 5-star reviews from company employees

It's fair to say that Facebook's Portal smart display received a tepid response at launch, so it was something of a surprise to see lots of glowing reviews of the device on Amazon. Turns out some were written by Facebook workers.
Smart Home

Idaho mother says her child’s light-up sippy cup exploded

After a mother filled a Nuby insulated light-up cup with milk, the cup allegedly exploded. The incident caused burns to the mother's hand and face and a stinging sensation in her lungs that required a trip to the hospital.
Smart Home

The Instant Pot Lux is a gateway drug into the pleasures of pressure cooking

The 3-quart Instant Pot Lux is one of the most affordable Instant Pots you can buy. Is it still a solid pressure cooker? Here are our thoughts on the Instant Pot Lux, a great IP baseline model.
Smart Home

Project Alias is a ‘smart parasite’ that stops smart speakers from listening

Two designers chose to do something about nosy smart speakers. The result is Project Alias, a "smart parasite" that whispers nonsense to Google Home and Alexa until it hears a specific wake word.
Smart Home

DS3 Clean water-free swatches could be the future of cleaning products

DS3 Clean swatches were on display at CES 2019. The small swatches come in several types, including shampoo and toilet cleaner. They're great for travel, but their real impact is in how such supplies will be shipped and stored.
Smart Home

Amazon patents a technology to help Alexa fight fake voice attacks

Amazon filed a patent this month for a new technology that looks like it would help its digital assistant Alexa fight fake voice attacks that could potentially fool Alexa's biometric security protocols.
Smart Home

Amazon Prime members number more than 100 million in the U.S., survey says

Consumer Intelligence Research Partners estimated there were 101 million U.S. Amazon Prime members as of December 31, 2018. Last April, CEO Jeff Bezos wrote there were more than 100 global million Prime members.
Smart Home

With focus on interoperability, is Nevo Butler a smarter home hub?

Universal Electronics is the latest company getting into the smart home market, announcing at CES 2019 that it intends to market the Nevo Butler, a new smart home hub with onboard A.I. and voice control technology.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: camera with A.I. director, robot arm assistant

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Emerging Tech

Google plots radar-sensing tech that could make any object smart

Computer scientists have shown how Google’s Soli sensor can be used to make dumb objects smart. Here's why radar-powered computing could finally make the dream of smart homes a reality.