In times of lockdown, more and more people have rediscovered the pleasure of living new culinary experiences. Also in this field, technological evolution comes to the rescue of even the least expert users, making life easier between the stoves for any user. This is thanks to companies such as Okida, a historic Turkish brand active in the design, production and sale of timers for ovens, as well as electronic controls for ovens, hoods, hobs, vacuum cleaners, refrigerators and freezers. Thanks to the skills developed by its R&D department, Okida now reaches a large number of local and international customers with customized solutions. For three years the company has been an integral part of the Sabaf Group. They are electronics and the concept of interconnection that currently represent the driving force of innovation in the kitchen. For example, even this environment is now open to the possibility of remote control of the oven, thanks to the technological timers proposed by Okida. To learn more about the new trends in this regard, we heard from Burak Koc, General Manager of Okida.
What is Okida product range for oven timer application?
One of the main Okida products are effectively oven timers. We developed a wide range of oven timers for both electric and gas applications. Timers have evolved to adapt themselves to satisfy the growing demand of additional features.
Which new features can be added to traditional oven timers?
Nowadays our range of products include timers with IoT features, Wi-fi and Bluetooth connection. We also developed features that allow the timer to become a real Electronic Thermostat and, according to latest trends, we developed the displays in order to be bigger and better performing.
Specifically, what characteristics allow you to define an oven as smart?
The features we previously mentioned are not making an oven smarter. In order to be able to define an oven as a smart one we need to talk about oven controls with TFT touch User Interface (UI), connectivity with devices such as Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant, cloud communication to download recipes. All these features are presently not available in oven timers but are available in full electronic oven controls Okida has in its product range.
What can be done to make easy-to-use ovens?
While developing our products, including timers, each product undergoes through a very deep analysis of industrial and aesthetic design that also involve product usability. Only when all these aspects have been properly scrutinized, we will give green light to the production of a brand-new product that will take into accounts all aspects that will make it an easy-to-use one.
In more details, what are the benefits of having an electronic timer inside the oven?
Electronic oven timers allow the end user to directly control and manage easily many features such as time, alarm, start and/or end of cooking, automatic clock sync via IoT, etc. All these features make the user experience very pleasant and trouble free, significantly improving end user cooking experience.
Are there any remote-control functions for the oven? Can you briefly illustrate how this can happen?
When timers include IoT connectivity, a smartphone / tablet dedicated app allows to read and manage all information from remote. Some examples? One can be the time left to the end of cooking: the app will notify the end user when cooking is completed. A second one can be the possibility to control remotely the opening and closing of the oven door when a motorized system is embedded in the oven.
Precisely what types of timers for ovens are available and what are the main technological features?
The historic model was the OT3000 which was followed by the OT-2000, OT-1000, OT-4000 and OT-5000 models. The differentiation between these models mainly concerns the segmentation of the same in the market: OT-3000 is normally used on large free-standing cookers, OT-2000 is typical of small or professional ones requiring small timers, OT-4000 is the aesthetic evolution of the 3000 and OT-5000 is aimed at ovens with slim panels while OT-1000 is dedicated to special ovens. Then there is another differentiation between these models which is instead purely aesthetic: the user interface can be different, as well as the position of the buttons, the size and the extension of the display can vary significantly and the applicability can also be different (metal / glass).
Can you give us an example of some particularly sophisticated or innovative function, able to stand out from the others?
Recently some of the following features are among the most wanted: pyrolytic (self-cleaning) oven, meat probe, IoT (Wi-Fi/Bluetooth), steam oven, gas oven application, richer displays. On the top of all of these features remain the possibility of a profound customization of the timers that most of customers are requesting to differentiate their own products.
How and to what extent can your oven timers be customized? What are the most requested customizations?
Within each timer model, it is possible to have both functional (example: number of relays) as well as aesthetics customization (color of display, shape of display icons, etc.). We are very flexible on this side and we can guarantee our customers a complete set of customizations.
What distinguishes the OC3100 flagship product from the others?
OC3100 is not a generic timer and it’s not a full electronic oven control: it’s a perfect bridge between them. It includes electronic thermostat, meat-probe control, self-cleaning door-lock control, etc. on top of all traditional timer features.
Are you planning any further technological evolution for your oven timers?
Okida is daily concentrated investigating any possible improvement coming from the state-of-the-art technology in order to be able to applicate any new solution to our products. In addition, we are available to follow our customers request of customization based on their specification.
Finally, what business goals have you set for the second half of 2021?
We have an ambitious product development roadmap with a pipeline of active projects in different fields and not just limited to oven timers or oven controls. Okida has indeed a wide range of product including cooker hood controls, refrigerators controls, small domestic appliances controls, hygiene products controls (touchless towel and soap dispensers controls) and so on and we are delivering product innovation to our customers on daily basis.