KBzine: the original kitchen and bathroom industry e-news - since 2002
5th October 2012
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Robert Mohl, Managing Director of Bridport luxury bathroom company Ocean Bathrooms, is seeking to make more people aware of the true value and importance of the humble toilet in their home
by John Swain, Product Manager for Franke UK
Pictured here is the new Renolit Covaren Moulins; a design reminiscent of a concrete structure with a subtle two colour square print. Given its very subtle printed design, the finish can also be used as a pseudo solid colour.
I spent five minutes trying to set the clock on my elderly mother's modern oven this week and eventually needed to refer to the manual (now where had she put it?). A further 10 minutes later with the manual at hand, I discovered that the symbol which was supposed to appear when I followed a particular procedure didn't come up as promised. Isn't anyone who doesn't know these appliances asked by the manufacturer to try and follow the manual to see that it's right before it's printed?
Never one to give up, I managed to set the clock in my own way and now mostly it matches the clock on the microwave above it. The fact that one's some 15 seconds ahead of the other? Well, mum's just going to have to live with that as I couldn't remember how I'd set the clock and didn't want to risk losing it again!
I gave up on trying to set the clocks on the telephones...
My efforts and the frustration I felt got me thinking about how complicated Sky is for the elderly to get their heads around - and as for the modern combi-boiler systems and the need to top up the water whilst bleeding the radiators and taking care not to exceed the recommended pressure (if you've ever experienced a boiler 'blow' you'll know what I mean!) or even attempting to understand a seven day digital thermostat with five time zones... Well - it's easier just to switch the heating on and off at the boiler, isn't it?
During the ongoing conversation, (mum saying, "Leave it. I'll manage without") I learned that she no longer has anything 'on toast' as she's not sure how to use the grill that she's had for over a year. I quickly became cross that anyone not fully technology-savvy is going to struggle in getting the best out of household appliances and gadgets. That means most of the elderly, like my mum. And while I'm great at reading a map, me too.
I have a Whirlpool Max microwave which is very technologically advanced but so easy to use. It glows various coloured lights to remind me of the function I'm using and plays different tunes to remind me that I need to pause it to stir, or that the cooking's finished etc (when friends have visited, we've turned the lights off and stood and watched/listened to it at their request. One even said: "Who needs Christmas decorations when you have one of these?) So it can be done.
I was delighted to see that Amica is thinking of launching its RedDot Award winning Zen oven "the antithesis of overwhelming technology" into the UK (see story below, for more). I reckon it will down a storm with people like my mother and those like me that have to get psyched up before even opening an instruction manual...
This Week's News
Carron Phoenix has agreed the sale and transfer of its commercial business to Franke UK, forming a single legal entity for the trading of both brands in the UK and Ireland markets.
The Red Dot Best of The Best oven, Zen, from Amica, is being considered for the UK market following IFA, Berlin. But the company would like input from the UK kitchen and electrical retailers on its unusual qualities.
The head of Europe's leading employers' body has called for companies that have their principal markets in Europe to reassess the risks and opportunities of concentrating their production and service centres at locations far removed from their customers.
Symphony, the UK fitted furniture manufacturer with over 40 years of heritage, has added yet another award to its collection, having been awarded Zero Waste to Landfill status.
Negative mentions about a business or its products on the Internet could hit a company in the balance sheet, and once a company has a poor online reputation, it could spread like a virus. Companies need to take ownership of their online reputation to avoid potential disaster.
Exclusive to Hafele UK, Metropolis hosts a selection of bar, bow, pull handles as well as square, classic mushroom and tapered knobs.
British manufacturer Ellis Furniture continues to go from strength to strength, investing substantially across the business to further enhance its service and product offering to both trade customers and consumers. The investment, which is completely self-funded by the family-owned business, includes the installation of state of the art machinery and up to the minute technology, as well as an expanded worforce at the Huddersfield site.
Bathroom specialist HiB has made two new strategic appointments to its growing design and production teams in the UK.
With water saving being a crucial factor in the building and refurbishment of commerical projects to ensure that they meet the necessary criteria for efficiency and sustainability, Geberit has launched a new innovation that ensures its electronically controlled taps are the most energy efficient on the market.
The merger of Karim Rashid's futuristic vision with the extraordinary properties of Hi-Macs, the latest-generation acrylic stone, has given rise to Kook and Karan, two kitchens manufactured by Aran Cucine, remarkable for their ultimate originality.
Showerwall, the waterproof laminate wallpanelling system for bathrooms, has notched up almost 40,000 viewings since it made its debut on You Tube six months ago in April.
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News in Brief
Weekend traffic delays
Our contacts at the Highways Agency tell us that an abnormal load vehicle will be travelling at speeds of 10 to 15mph, anti-clockwise along the M25, from junction 30, Thurrock, to junction 23, for the A1 in Hertfordshire, on Sunday 7th October from around 08.00. The width of the vehicle means that it will use two lanes and knowing the M25 there are likely to be some lengthy delays, so if you're scheduling deliveries, or planning to leave home early for a Monday appointment, be prepared.
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Latest year-to-date figures release today for new home registrations in the UK reveal that house building levels continue to fall, according to NHBC.
Fitted bedroom furniture company Hepplewhite is offering its best-performing dealers the chance to win some fantastic new technology as a sales incentive this Autumn.