We've already seen some smartphone-connected appliances in LG's Thinq lineup, and it looks like Kenmore is now getting ready to join it in a big way with some fairly impressive "enhanced" appliances of its own -- which we managed to get an early look at here at CES. Those will include things like washers, dryers, stoves and refrigerators, all of which will be able to be controlled via a "smartphone or smart tablet" (Apple and Android devices were specifically mentioned as getting a free app), or via a large touchscreen on the device itself (not removable as a tablet, unfortunately). What's more, the appliances all boast Kenmore Connect, which allows for remote diagnostics that can be used to prepare technicians for in-home repairs, and they pack an array of energy management features that will let you conserve energy and keep watch on how much you're using. Unfortunately, you'll still have a bit of a wait before you can actually buy one -- Kenmore says they'll start rolling out in 2012. Hit up the gallery below for a closer look.
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Kenmore enhanced appliance technology

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Kenmore® Brand Showcases Enhanced Appliance Technology at 2011 Consumer Electronics Show

LAS VEGAS, Jan. 6, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- The Kenmore brand is proud to join the ranks of top technology brands at the 2011 Consumer Electronics Show with award-winning technology and innovation in the Connected Home TechZone. Complementing the advanced technologies displayed throughout the show floor, Kenmore brings major appliances and home technology that highlight design innovation, connectivity, energy management and new ways to engage consumers.

"Today's appliance advancements are making substantial waves in innovation circles," said Guenther Trieb, president, Sears Brands. "Kenmore takes pride in the fact that our innovation is creating buzz, but the real impact is how the technology we bring to market delivers on a clear purpose - simplifying customers' lives by allowing them to accomplish things more quickly, easily and for less money."

The Kenmore booth (26111, LVCC South Hall) features products and services in three areas: connectivity, product design innovations and enhanced social engagement with consumers. Booth highlights include:

* Remote Diagnostics: Now available in front-load laundry products, Kenmore brings forward thinking to top-load laundry and refrigeration.
o Kenmore Connect™: A new service that allows select Kenmore and Kenmore Elite front- and top-load washers and dryers to "talk" directly to service teams to answers questions, transmit data and provide product details to properly prepare service technicians should an in-home repair be needed.
* Touch LCD Interface: Available on front-load (color LCDs) and top-load laundry, dish and cooking products, touch LCD interface delivers information quickly and conveniently, which allows the user to get the best performance from the appliance. These digital displays provide enhanced, intuitive interfaces that place answers and advice at customers' fingertips.
* Energy Management: Through Smart Grid technology found in certain laundry and refrigeration appliances, consumers will have a better understanding of how their energy consumption can lead them to greater savings of resources and money. This new way of controlling energy use promotes energy independence.
* Remote Monitoring: Through personal technologies such as iPads and smart phones, consumers will be able to control appliances across laundry, refrigeration and cooking categories. Kenmore is developing cooking applications that eliminate the need for busy consumers to be on standby, allowing them to make the most of their time. Consumers can be alerted via voice or text when their oven reaches a pre-heat temperature or the oven self-cleaning cycle is complete. In addition, consumers can use their smart phones to check the oven temperature or remaining cook time for their meals.
* Intelligent Upgrades: Product options and cycles will soon be equipped with optional upgrades via smart technology. Kenmore is demonstrating this technology on top-load laundry feature and cycle options.
* Kenmore Social Network and Consumer Connectivity: The Kenmore Live Studio (KLS) in Chicago serves as a physical and virtual meeting place offering interactive experiences, including live studio broadcast of Facebook of events that are hosted by local chefs, fashion designers and other groups. Most recently, KLS was the hub of activity for "Kenmore Baking for the Troops," a social media program hosted on facebook.com/kenmore with a goal of sending 250,000 cookies to troops overseas. Kenmore reached its goal on Dec. 16 and donated $50,000 to "Heroes at Home Wish Registry". Throughout CES, attendees will be able to connect directly to what's happening in Chicago, and in return, those online who are not at the show can see what's happening directly at the Kenmore booth - live!


"We overhauled the brand in 2010 with more than 470 new products across categories, enhancing their style and function," said Betsy Owens, vice president, Kenmore. "And we're not looking back. Our presence at CES demonstrates our commitment to pushing Kenmore towards developing, exciting new innovations coupled with the reliable quality that we've been associated with for decades."

The Consumer Electronics Show runs from Jan. 6-9, 2011 at the Las Vegas Convention Center. Show attendees can visit the Kenmore brand at booth 26111.

About Sears Holdings Corporation

Sears Holdings Corporation is the nation's fourth largest broadline retailer with approximately 3,900 full-line and specialty retail stores in the United States and Canada. Sears Holdings is the leading home appliance retailer as well as a leader in tools, lawn and garden, home electronics and automotive repair and maintenance. Sears Holdings is the 2010 ENERGY STAR® Retail Partner of the Year. Key proprietary brands include Kenmore, Craftsman and DieHard, and a broad apparel offering, including such well-known labels as Lands' End, Jaclyn Smith and Joe Boxer, as well as the Apostrophe and Covington brands. It also has the Country Living collection, which is offered by Sears and Kmart. We are the nation's largest provider of home services, with more than 12 million service calls made annually. Sears Holdings Corporation operates through its subsidiaries, including Sears, Roebuck and Co. and Kmart Corporation. For more information, visit Sears Holdings' website at www.searsholdings.com.

Kenmore recently opened the "Kenmore Live Studio," an interactive center equipped with technology to stream exciting and innovative experiences live online. Studio visitors can share their voice with the world as they watch events that include chef and designer demonstrations, new product unveilings and more, in real time via Kenmore's Facebook page. The "Kenmore Live Studio," located in downtown Chicago at Huron and Wells (678 North Wells Street, Chicago Ill 60654), is open to the public every Thursday through Sunday. Visit www.facebook.com/kenmore to learn more.

SOURCE Sears Holdings Corporation