If you have a particular hatred for the microwave or prefer your food to be heated gently when you’re ready for lunch, Steambox is ready for your steamy lunch encounters. The company sold more than 500 of its device via Kickstarter at the end of 2019, and is finally ready to start shipping its device. We checked it out at CES in Las Vegas this week.
Between Kickstarter, Indiegogo, and its own pre-orders, the company tells me it has sold 1,300-1,400 Steamboxes to date.
“The Steambox is for every foodie in the world. It’s for everybody who wants to get out there, and be more flexible with the way they heat up their food,” explains Kevin de Krieger, the company’s co-founder and COO. He explains why he believes steaming is superior to microwaving. “Steam is very useful because it doesn’t dry out your food. It also ensures the food is heated up equally throughout. It also tastes way better. From our customers, we learned they love steam. The microwave basically kills your food, while with steam, it stays fresher, and it tastes almost like the first time you prepared your food. We love it, and our first customers do too.”
The company has produced around 3,000 units so far, and the company has stock in the US and in Europe, ready for buyers willing to part with the $270 to liberate themselves from the office microwave.
“In general, it takes 15 to 20 minutes to heat up your food to a hot meal. The battery capacity is for around 45 minutes, so you can use it 2-3 times on a single charge. After that, you need to charge it for two hours,” explains de Krieger.
The Bamboo-topped device looks incredibly sleek and has evolved a fair amount since its Kickstarter prototypes. One notable setback is that the Kickstarter campaign suggests the device can be charged with USB-C, but for the final design, the company opted to go back to a tip-and-sleeve style charger. A bit of a shame; it feels like if we can charge our high-end laptops from a 65W charger, the company could have found a way to charge the onboard batteries using USB-C as well.
“It will be easy to change to USB-C in the future,” de Krieger assures us. “But we haven’t been able to do it so far, because of how USB-C works. With the new regulations for USB-C in 2024, I believe they will upgrade the amount of voltage we can use. We are just waiting for them to make it work, and then we’ll definitely include it in the products.”
The company’s CEO prepared a video showing how the device works:
The steamer includes a 120W heating element, and measures 10.5 x 6.5 x 3.5 inches (27 x 16.5 x 9 cm). The food container is made of stainless steel and comes with a silicone lid. It can hold up to 25 oz (750 ml), and the whole device weighs around 4.4 lbs (1991g).
Available to buy now from the company’s website, it costs €249 / $269.