The pop-up toaster began burning bread for the masses in 1919, and while it was an American invention, the first iteration had very British tendencies and toasted only one side of its crusty victim. By 1925 this had been corrected — and the toaster has more or less remained the same ever since. Regardless of brand, number of buttons or inclusion of countdown timers, the driving principal behind browning has always been to apply heat to bread for a pre-determined amount of time; a process simple enough, but one that more often than not results in an unsavory end product.

Leave it to a University student to figure out a new way to get toasted. Unhappy with the inconsistency of browning from one toaster to another, Georgia Tech design student Basheer Tome noticed what we tend to ignore: that while setting “5” makes a golden brown, butter-melting bite in one model, it creates coal in another. This is because there is no set standard of measurement between models, brands or even the numbers on their dials. To remedy this, the Hue Toaster relies on toast’s one true measure of consistency, color.

Employing an array of color sensors, the Hue has the ability to “see” the bread within and therefore browns it to the desired doneness, every time. You won’t find a bevy of buttons to press or modes to choose from on the Hue — just an easy to decipher color palette. Regardless of whether it starts frozen, thawed or even as a bagel, bread in the Hue will continue to “toast” until the sugars break down and the bread tans (or blackens, you sicko) to the color of your choice. The Hue also shines the light of its heating element through a perforated outer shell, using thermochromatic ink to reinforce the concepts of color and change, and creating a cool glow on your countertop to guide your half-asleep slog through breakfast.

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