Panasonic's selling point has always been in quality. Today's phones, laptops and TV's have no moving parts or difference in materials (vs 1 decade ago). So there is no selling point for Panasonic (and Sony) for today. It makes sense they still strive in home appliances.
Dyson get on my nerves. They have been selling their CEO per-se for the last 20 years. If the Japanese are buying them like hot-cakes, it means the Japanese are easily manipulated by such marketing.
And Mr Dyson is not good looking.
Actually, I'm going to make Junko's "who needs it" comment for her, and I'll keep it brief. A machine that requires your attendance for operation (like a washer) doesn't need a Smart Phone interface. A multi-touch screen, maybe. But the ability to reconfigure it from your phone is just adding bells and whistles for their own sake. Waste of my money!
On the other hand, being able to control a Roomba-like device remotely has some possible conveniences. If the cost adder were small enough, it might be worth it.
"Taking several images per second, the upper and lower cameras scan ceilings, walls and floors, even under dim lighting conditions. ... At the same time, multiple sensors detect obstacles within a 180-degree field, taking hundreds of surface images to help provide collision-free operation."
Great! I'm just waiting for the script-writers for "Person of Interest" and "NCIS" to have Mr. Finch's Machine or Agent Timothy McGee hack a vacuum cleaner's cameras!
As the old song says, "Paranoia strikes deep; into yor life it will creep."
DaStargazer wrote "Great! I'm just waiting for the script-writers for "Person of Interest" and "NCIS" to have Mr. Finch's Machine or Agent Timothy McGee hack a vacuum cleaner's cameras!"
That's already being done, isn't it? Doesn't the robot that iRobot sells to the military have cameras and telemetry for sending into possibly hostile-occupied buildings? And certainly the iRobots that were sent to Japan to help shut down Fukushima-Dae Ichi have cameras and telemetry.
You remember Scott McNealy's comment, don't you?
Actually, having a smartphone interface to a washer or dryer would be really, really nice in an apartment complex or college dorm.
Before walking down three flights of stairs with a heavy hamper filled with dirty clothes, you could check if a washer is available (and even reserve it if the software is really done right). Then it could text you when it is done.
I'm guessing that this isn't what they are doing with the technology, though. It is a shame.