Light-up Cereal Boxes Unveiled at CES 2011
The 2011 Consumer Electronics Show hit Las Vegas the first week in January and a lot of cool new technology was showcased. One piece of technology that was received very well at CES but I am reserved in choosing to designate as “cool” is the light-up cereal box.
The new eCoupled technology comes to us from Fulton Innovation, a company specializing in creating “solutions [that] deliver social and economic value to people the world over.” The eCoupled technology uses wireless power via inked discs with the wireless power technology built into its coils as the power source to allow the shelves of the grocery store to act as the power source for the cereal boxes. And it looks like General Mills is first in the game, based on what cereals were used in the demonstration.
Yes, ladies (and gentlemen), our cereal boxes are going high tech. Why? My conspiracy theory is so that we make mindless impulse purchases based on flashy colorful boxes rather than comparing the actual nutritional value of said billboard products (I made that up, but maybe it’s a real term) to other products whose companies don’t choose to spend their marketing dollars in this manner. And the light-up boxes can cost more because you’re getting more than just cereal, you’re getting entertainment!
To its credit, once you bring the cereal box home it can interface with applications on computers or gadgets to inform you of the nutrition information, sell by date, quantity remaining in the package (remotely know if you need to pick up another box of Cheerios or if it was just a foggy dream that you finished off the box that morning), so there are definite advantages to the wireless power technology. I’m just turned off by the marketing scheme that lures our eyes toward the blinking product instead of the product with better nutrition.
Also a point to consider: How is this packaging green? Right now I can fully recycle my cereal box. With the technology included in the box to allow it to light up and report information to applications I just don’t see how the box is recyclable without breaking it down to remove all portions involved with lighting up the box. Glad to be wrong about this, but I haven’t seen that point addressed anywhere.
This is my opinion. What do you think? Is having cereal boxes and (we all know it will happen) other product boxes light up truly a value to you, the consumer? Fad? Another step toward Skynet and/or destroying the planet? I would love for you to tell me your thoughts on the matter.
For some strange reason, I couldn’t find any images of these boxes that I am authorized to use in this post, so to see more still images of these cereal boxes visit Google Images.