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Amazon Dash-powered WePlenish smart pantry device orders snacks, coffee, more

A smart device manufacturer based near Fort Lauderdale, Florida, is helping Amazon on its mission to augment all smart homes by offering a new smart pantry device. The WePlenish Java Smart Container orders snacks and coffee — from certain designated brands only — automatically using Amazon Dash.

The company has raised about $15,000 of its $50,000 goal on Kickstarter, and WePlenish is already offering pre-orders on its website for a flat $20, half of the device’s estimated retail cost of $40.

Available in shiny black or white finishes, the WePlenish Java uses smart sensors to detect the levels of whatever its tracking, which may include coffee pods, espresso capsules, or tea, as well as snacks like granola bars, beef jerky, and graham crackers. When the supply level drops below 50 percent, the WePlenish Java uses Wi-Fi to reorder the item using Amazon Dash Replenishment. It’s also battery-powered, so owners can stash the WePlenish Java back in an actual pantry, or leave it on the counter as another shiny accoutrement for the kitchen.

“We started WePlenish because we believe the future of the smart home depends on automation,” said founder Ro Grosman, whose previous experience includes a leadership role at sales platform GoDataFeed. “It’s a home where technology does the work for you, saving you time and effort, so you can do more of the things you love.”

To get started, WePlenish Java customers download the app and use it to link the device to compatible consumables by connecting to their Amazon account. An icon at the bottom of the screen lets users browse through compatible products. Right now, it’s a device with limitations related to branding. However, WePlenish Java owners can also manage their inventories and orders manually using the app.

Currently, WePlenish has identified about 90 branded products that have been screened to work with the WePlenish Java, including familiar consumer items like Kind bars, Folgers K-Cup Pods, and single-shot coffee pods from Starbucks, Nespresso, and Krispy Kreme.

“Dash replenishment makes it easy for device makers to build automatic replenishment into devices, offering a differentiated, convenient experience that helps keep customers’ homes running smoothly,” said Dean Seifert, general manager for Amazon Dash. “WePlenish Java is another great example of how Dash Replenishment can help simplify customers’ lives — simply set up Dash Replenishment, and Amazon delivers everyday essentials like coffee pods or pantry must-haves the moment supplies run low.”

As always, we dig the innovation and inventive thinking that often leads to Kickstarter and other crowd-funding platforms, but we’ve all been burned by vaporware, too, so we still remind everyone: be careful with crowd-funded projects so you don’t get burned.

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