2012-10-17

Co.Exist

SodaStream's Yves Behar-Designed Machine Makes Conservation Sexy

The at-home beverage carbonator can save hundreds of plastic bottles from going into landfills. And now it doesn’t ugly up your kitchen in the process.

I’ll admit it: I’m a sucker for sparkling beverages of all kinds. The problem with buying lots of soda and fizzy water is that the cans and plastic bottles quickly add up to a large waste stream. The SodaStream, a product made by an Israeli company of the same name, endeavors to solve the waste problem by making home carbonation easy: Fill up the designated bottle with water or the beverage of your choice, screw the bottle into the CO2-canister equipped device, press down on the top of the SodaStream (or pull a lever, depending on the model), and you’ve got a carbonated drink. The product is well-designed in all of its iterations—both high- and lower-end—but now SodaStream is adding some designer recognition with a new model designed by Yves Behar of Fuseproject.

"When we approached the whole design process, we really wanted to change every element of the machine," explains Yaron Kopel, SodaStream’s chief innovation and design officer. After hunting for suitable designers, SodaStream settled on Behar, known for his work with companies like Jawbone and Herman Miller.

SodaStream went into the project knowing exactly what changes it wanted to make: removing the levers and buttons, getting rid of the noise that accompanies carbonation (current versions make it sound like the machine is farting during the process—three farts usually means that it’s finished), and making it so that users don’t have to screw the bottle into the SodaStream every time they use it.

The SodaStream Source achieves all of these goals elegantly. Sparkling beverage-lovers push the bottle into the SodaStream to attach it. Pressing the whole hand on top of the machine begins the carbonation process, and an LED interface indicates when it’s done.

The whole design process took just over nine months. SodaStream estimates that Source can save the average home 550 plastic bottles annually—and it can be done in style and silence.

The Source goes on sale later this month; the basic plastic version will cost $129, while the metal version will retail for $149.

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