For CES 2021, Samsung’s new refrigerators embrace the custom aesthetic trend


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Samsung

This story is part of CES, where our editors will bring you the latest news and the hottest gadgets of the entirely virtual CES 2021.

A term from tailoring, “bespoke” means something that’s made for your specific needs — and that’s the pitch with Samsung’s Bespoke line of refrigerators, which make their global debut at CES 2021, a virtual, all-digital event this year due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

To fit the bill, the Bespoke refrigerators offer fully modular designs that you can customize to your kitchen’s content. Each of the fridge’s four doors comes in your choice of finish, material and color — including unusual options like pink and sky blue. That lets you mix and match to make the fridge that best fits your personal aesthetic. If you want something uniform in classic black or white, great. If you’d prefer a statement fridge with burgundy refrigerator doors and navy blue freezer doors, that’s fine, too.


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All of that borrows a page from the international playbook, as refrigerators in Europe and Asia have long offered options for modular design and lots of color choices. In fact, Samsung first introduced the Bespoke lineup for the European market in 2019, albeit with an even greater number of size and color choices than Americans will see this year. With the line’s global expansion, Samsung is making a cautious bet that American consumers are willing to pay a premium for unique, eye-catching fridge designs, too.

As for features, each of the new Bespoke models borrows Samsung’s 4-Door Flex design, which splits the appliance into four quadrants. Color-wise, your options for each of the four doors are as follows: navy steel, champagne steel, black matte, white glass, gray glass, beige glass, pink glass, sky blue glass, burgundy glass and navy glass. 

If you want, you can mix and match different colors for each of the different doors on Samsung’s Bespoke refrigerators.


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The top two sections serve as the refrigerator and the bottom two serve as the freezer, but you get the option of dialing the bottom right section’s temperature up and using it as an extra fridge if you need. That’s a high-end feature worth considering, but it isn’t new.

Same goes for the autofilling water pitcher, a feature I loved in premium Samsung fridges from years past. Although it has been done before, Samsung claims that the pitcher is better integrated with the in-door water dispenser in these Bespoke models. There’s also a new, deodorizing UV filter for the air inside the fridge, which fits an expected trend of new products incorporating germ-killing ultraviolet light into their designs. Just note that Samsung isn’t making any claims about killing germs at this point. That’s a contrast with LG, which put a UV sanitizer inside the water dispenser on its newest fridge, with promises of killing up to 99.99% of bacteria.

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The water dispenser is located inside the left refrigerator door, right next to a handy, auto-filling pitcher.


Samsung

Meanwhile, the Bespoke freezer’s ice maker can switch from standard ice cubes to nugget-style “ice bites” for folks who enjoy drinks with chewable ice. That’s a nice upgrade, and honestly, I’m surprised that Samsung beat GE to the punch here, given the popularity of that company’s Opal Nugget Ice Maker.

The one thing I find disappointing about the Bespoke pitch is that Samsung won’t let you upgrade to a model with a Family Hub touchscreen door, though I suppose that makes sense, given that the Bespoke fridges don’t come with cameras on the inside like the preconfigured Family Hub fridges do. Still, it feels like a missed opportunity, especially since Samsung is using 2021 to make some key upgrades. The 22.5-inch Android built-in touchscreen is getting a new version of its software, Family Hub 6.0, which will include a redesigned user interface, refined smart home controls and the addition of a SmartThings Cooking app that can help you build out a weekly menu.

Samsung isn’t sharing any specifics on pricing or availability here in January, but it’s safe to assume that these fridges won’t come cheap once they arrive later this spring. 



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