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Oral-B's smart toothbrush wants to fix our dumb hygiene habits (hands-on)

Chris Velazco, @chrisvelazco
February 25, 2014
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Were we expecting to find a Bluetooth-enabled toothbrush here at MWC? No, we weren't. Did we physically put it to the test, after a long line of other exhibition goers? No, we certainly did not. However, we'd be more than pleased to show you how the Oral-B's SmartSeries 7000 might earn its keep. As you're about to see, the $220 gizmo can do plenty of things that normal toothbrushes can't.

Gallery: Oral-B SmartSeries 7000 hands-on | 10 Photos

The 7000 is about the same size and weight as any other fancy electric toothbrush (if a bit heftier than its crowdfunded rival), and is compatible with any ol' Oral-B brush heads you may have in your medicine cabinet. It's handsome enough, but really: it's a toothbrush, not a fashion statement. Anyway, as soon as the toothbrush and your phone have forged a connection over Bluetooth, firing up the 7000 will start a countdown to oral cleanliness in the companion smartphone app.

You (or your dentist, if you're the responsible type) can add and tweak those timers as desired, though the default timer will have you scrubbing different areas of your mouth for two minutes. In case the sheer boredom of brushing your teeth for that long is too much to bear, you can also thumb through a stream of news articles or local weather reports (no, really) to help you hang in there. Turns out, just furiously mashing those bristles into your teeth isn't great either, so the timer will blink red if you're pressing too hard.

Oh, but the fun doesn't end once you're gleaming. The 7000 sends over your personal brushing data to the app, where it's turned into pretty graphs and accolades for prolonged brushing. Your dentist can specify certain areas you should focus on while brushing too, which appear during the countdown to keep you moving in all the right ways. And if you don't have a dentist to meet regularly? The app will find and list local ones, though you'll have to deal with all that insurance stuff on your own (unless you live in Europe, but let's not get into that).

Matt Brian and Sharif Sakr contributed to this report.

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