From making elaborate shopping lists to posting notes on the refrigerator to smartphone apps, the humble grocery list has come a long way. A common theme across this evolution is the fact that the activity involves forgetfulness. To counter this problem, entrepreneur and inventor Rob Griffin created GeniCan, a “smart” trash can that scans your trash to generate grocery lists. Along with other futuristic smart home technologies, GeniCan also made an appearance at the CES2017 last month in Las Vegas. The patent pending attachable device for your trash can uses barcode scanners and voice recognition technology to help you make shopping lists based on what you’re disposing.
The founders, who personally experienced issues relating to shopping for their grocery, knew that there was a problem to solve, and also that Internet of Things (IoT) could solve it. “The best time to capture those items for the shopping list is the second you throw them away! So obviously, the best spot for the device was the garbage can and/or recycle bin,” founder Griffin writes in a blog, explaining the motivation behind GeniCan. As a user, you simply need to scan items before tossing them into the can, and the device adds it to an associated smartphone app. For items with no/unreadable barcodes, you state the item name, and GeniCan would add that to your grocery list as well.
Grocery shopping still sounds a daunting task? GeniCan makes it easier. Through a partnership with Amazon called the Amazon Dash Replenishment Service, GeniCan also arranges to deliver supplies directly to your home or office. While the device only supports products and barcodes of the US market in their current database, and uses only English for voice recognition, the app allows users to add descriptions and images for new items, and the startup also says that it will focus on supporting additional countries.