Ditch plastic bottles with this smartphone-activated water fountain

reefill smartphone water fountain screen shot 2017 04 29 at 7 11 40 pm
Bottled water may soon be a waste of the past — that is, if Reefill has its way. The New York City-based technology startup is taking advantage of your smartphone to help you save the planet with a system of phone-activated water refill stations. So as long as you have a reusable water bottle with you, you’ll be able to access unlimited cold, filtered tap water just about anywhere.

As it stands, Reefill can claim eight pilot stations in the Greenwich Village neighborhood of New York City. But a new Indiegogo campaign hopes to expand that presence to 100 locations across the city. The goal is simple: to help rid the United States’ most populous city of plastic water bottles.

Last year, the Reefill team notes, U.S. bottled water sales topped $21 billion, bringing in more revenue than the soda industry. And while it may be good for our waistlines that we’re choosing bottled water over sugary carbonated drinks, it’s not doing much for Mother Earth. The problem, of course, is that those of us who do opt to carry around our own reusable water containers often find ourselves at a loss when it comes to refills.

There aren’t all that many public water fountains — at least, those that dispense water that you’d actually want to drink. Reefill seeks to solve this problem by providing the public with a convenient water solution without waste and for a low cost.

To use Reefill, members are asked to pay $1.99 per month, which grants them unlimited access to all Reefill stations. Then, simply download the Reefill app (available on both Android and iPhone), and search the in-app map for the nearest station. Once users have arrived at the nearest fountain, they can activate the station using Bluetooth via the app, and fill up their bottles. The app also keeps tabs on how many bottles Reefill user have saved from the landfill, as well as how much money members are saving by opting out of buying bottled water.

“Reefill’s pilot program has been a huge success and we have gotten great feedback from our users who let us know that they are eager to see a citywide network,” said Reefill Co-founder and CEO Jason Pessel. “We are ready to make that a reality and help as many people as possible ditch bottled water.”

Emerging Tech

Delivery robots are poised to invade our cities, but are we ready for them?

Across the United States, small startups and big businesses alike are clamoring to swarm city streets with fleets of autonomous delivery robots. The only problem? Our urban areas aren't always well-equipped to accommodate them
Smart Home

Power through your afternoon slump with the best espresso machines

Brew professional-style espresso drinks and become the envy of your neighborhood with one of the best espresso machines on the planet. We have options across a range of price points, perfect for any budget.
Emerging Tech

Curiosity collects first clay sample, could provide evidence of ancient water

The Curiosity rover's adventures on Mars continue with an exploration of the clay-rich bedrock in a part of Mount Sharp. Clay minerals are of particular interest as they could indicate that there used to be water present on the surface.
Mobile

The 100 best Android apps turn your phone into a jack-of-all-trades

Choosing which apps to download is tricky, especially given how enormous and cluttered the Google Play Store has become. We rounded up 100 of the best Android apps and divided them neatly, with each suited for a different occasion.
Mobile

Spruce up your Lenovo smartphone with the best Moto Mods for the Moto Z-series

Moto Mods, the snap-on accessories compatible with Lenovo's Moto Z-series smartphones add a lot of value without adding a lot of bulk. Looking to try one out? Here are a few of our favorite Moto Mods.
Mobile

The Pixel 3 range will soon be coming to T-Mobile's network

Google's latest flagships, the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL, are now official and we have all the details from the October 9 event in New York City and Paris. Here's everything we know about the Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL.
Mobile

The Pixel 3a and 3a XL will be coming to the U.S. with T-Mobile

The Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL are considered to be two of the best Android smartphones, but it looks like Google could be prepping a midrange line. Say hello to the Pixel 3a and Pixel 3a XL.
Mobile

Keep your new iPad (2018) sparkling with the best screen protectors

Your iPad sports a stunning 9.7-inch screen and you'll want it to stay that way. The best iPad (2018) screen protectors guard against cracks, scratches, and even smudging from your fingers. Check out our top picks here.
Mobile

Intel gives up on 5G modems for smartphones, will focus on other devices

After a delay that saw Intel's manufacture of 5G modems pushed back to 2020, Intel has given up on the 5G modem business, and will focus its efforts elsewhere. But is something else to blame?
Mobile

The black satin Razer Phone 2 is now available for $500

The Razer Phone 2 is finally here, and it's got upgraded specs, that super-smooth 120Hz display, and an updated design. Here's absolutely everything you need to know about the Razer Phone 2.
Mobile

The best LG G7 ThinQ cases will keep your phone looking new

The LG G7 ThinQ comes with a powerful processor, versatile cameras, and amazing sound. But a powerful phone still needs protection and you might want to change the style. Here are the best LG G7 ThinQ cases.
Mobile

Multiple phone leaks show May 21 is going to be a big day for Honor

Honor will launch at least one new smartphone on May 21, at an event taking place in London. Leaks have indicated the Honor 20 will take center stage, with a Lite version, and perhaps even another model also showing up on the day.
Mobile

Breaking news: Samsung responds to reported Galaxy Fold display issues

The Samsung Galaxy Fold has arrived, and it goes on sale soon. Folding out from a 4.6-inch display to a tablet-sized 7.3-inch display, this unique device has six cameras, two batteries, and special software to help you use multiple apps.
Mobile

The Avalon V is Alcatel’s first Verizon-exclusive smartphone

Alcatel is has announced a new phone, the Avalon V -- but this budget device isn't what makes the announcement special. It's Alcatel's first phone on the Verizon network, and it's available now.