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Businesses DRM The Almighty Buck Hardware

The Next Keurig Will Make Your Coffee With a Dash of "DRM" 769

FuzzNugget writes "Apparently seeking to lock competitors out of the burgeoning single-serve coffee market, Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, maker of the popular Keurig coffee machines, will make their new machines work with licensed pods only. GMCR's CEO confirmed this in a statement: 'The much-anticipated ‘Keurig 2.0’ single-cup brewing system with ‘interactive readability’ (that doesn’t work with unlicensed/copycat pods) will offer such “game-changing functionality” that consumers - and unlicensed players - will want to switch.'"
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The Next Keurig Will Make Your Coffee With a Dash of "DRM"

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  • by Jumperalex ( 185007 ) on Monday March 03, 2014 @05:53PM (#46390781)

    they deserve to fail miserably and go down in flames.

  • Re:Why? (Score:4, Informative)

    by hawguy ( 1600213 ) on Monday March 03, 2014 @06:00PM (#46390867)

    Downside : a normal coffee brew process generates 6-12 cups of Joe.

    I guess we could all switch to a press ... but that's a bit messy and requires a stand alone heating method (I've not the space to keep a proper tea kettle on my office desk)

    Keurig provides a clean single-cup solution

    Just use an immersion heater [] in your coffee mug to heat the water before you dump it in the press.

  • Re:Why? (Score:5, Informative)

    by alphatel ( 1450715 ) * on Monday March 03, 2014 @06:03PM (#46390909)

    Downside : a normal coffee brew process generates 6-12 cups of Joe.

    I guess we could all switch to a press ... but that's a bit messy and requires a stand alone heating method (I've not the space to keep a proper tea kettle on my office desk)

    Keurig provides a clean single-cup solution

    Are you on crack? We boil water in an electric kettle in 2.5 minutes, then pour into a press, and blammo, coffee. Keurig provides stupid, bland, watery goop that doesn't leave you with a bunch of grinds to clean up. However, it is neither greener, nor more efficient or even easier really.

  • Re:Why? (Score:3, Informative)

    by HornWumpus ( 783565 ) on Monday March 03, 2014 @06:04PM (#46390929)

    A Brazil press is microwave safe. Scratch the bottom to keep from super heating.

  • Re:Why? (Score:5, Informative)

    by EMG at MU ( 1194965 ) on Monday March 03, 2014 @06:07PM (#46390949)
    Every coffee maker I have owned in the past 8 years has had a 1-4 cup option.
  • Re:Why? (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 03, 2014 @06:15PM (#46391069)

    Starbuck's Via is also a clean single-cup solution. It is cheaper, smaller and more dependable than the Keurig machine. It is also a format that would be very hard to add DRM, etc.
    Since Keurig wants to punish its customers, I will forgo their stupidity.
    Keurig, like Beta, sucks.

  • Re:Why? (Score:5, Informative)

    by wisnoskij ( 1206448 ) on Monday March 03, 2014 @06:18PM (#46391127) Homepage

    Coffee makers make a little or as much coffee as you want. If you want one cup, only put one cup or water and a proportionate amount of grounds. And you have the added benefit that while brewing many cups of Keurig is a linearly hard problem (meaning that it takes 20 times longer to brew 20 cups), conventional brewing is not.
    When you actually in a situation where you are brewing a lot of coffee, the conventional method becomes more efficient per cup.

    Any computer programmer should be able to tell you which is the overall more efficient solution for the general situation.

  • Re:Horrible coffee (Score:2, Informative)

    by Tough Love ( 215404 ) on Monday March 03, 2014 @06:33PM (#46391313)

    The regular Keurig machine makes filtered coffee; it is not an espresso machine.

    Yes, and it tastes horrible, compared to decently made filtered coffee. I'm quite familiar with it, unfortunately.

  • Re:Why? (Score:5, Informative)

    by Charliemopps ( 1157495 ) on Monday March 03, 2014 @06:33PM (#46391315)

    Um... Keurig sucks. I've had their coffee, it's expensive and tastes bland.

    I've been using this for nearly a decade: []

    Taste great, 1 cup and I can use actual REAL coffee in it!
    also, in a pinch you can make one of these out of a paper cup by poking holes in it and sticking in a regular old filter. The key is not to make the holes too big so the cofee steeps in the hot water for long enough.

  • Re:Horrible coffee (Score:5, Informative)

    by GreyWolf3000 ( 468618 ) on Monday March 03, 2014 @06:34PM (#46391325) Journal

    Cleaning the grounds out of a french press is awful. The aeropress completely fixes that problem.

  • Re:Why? (Score:5, Informative)

    by Jarik C-Bol ( 894741 ) on Monday March 03, 2014 @06:38PM (#46391355)
    There is no cholesterol in coffee. Coffee does contain the molecule cafestol at about .06% by weight in each coffee bean, and cafestol has been correlated with increased 'bad' cholesterol, (but other positive health effects) and there has been no evidence that paper filters removes cafestol.
  • Re:Why? (Score:5, Informative)

    by ttucker ( 2884057 ) on Monday March 03, 2014 @06:49PM (#46391511)
    I brew my coffee in a press every morning. It takes about 3 minutes to boil, brew, and clean, an AeroPress. []
  • Re:Why? (Score:4, Informative)

    by Archangel Michael ( 180766 ) on Monday March 03, 2014 @06:53PM (#46391571) Journal

    I have an inductive hot water pot, it is about as safe as anything possible. You tell me it is a fire hazard, and I'll find a dozen more likely sources in your office.

    The only thing that gets hot is the water pot portion. And it is separated from the induction base, which remains coolish. An Incandescent (you remember those?) bulb is hotter.

  • Re:Not my cup of tea (Score:2, Informative)

    by sideslash ( 1865434 ) on Monday March 03, 2014 @06:55PM (#46391589)
    That's funny, but no. Actually C# (rather, the CLR and .NET in general) was the project Anders Hejlsberg got reassigned to after Microsoft's Java-based WFC debacle fell on its face. While C# may have started life as "Microsoft's ripoff of Java", it has grown apart in some really significant and awesome ways. I suspect that most people who are fluent in both languages will appreciate what I'm saying, and could name some of the many ways that C# rules and Java drools.
  • Re:Really? (Score:5, Informative)

    by CCarrot ( 1562079 ) on Monday March 03, 2014 @07:01PM (#46391673)

    How much "game-changing functionality" can you really work into a fucking coffee machine?

    To me, it sounds like they're planning on emulating Tassimo and their bar-coded brewing system, so the user can use 'milk' pods, tea pods, etc. and the system will brew them differently depending on the scanned and recognized contents (temperature for sure, pressure maybe? size? IDK)

    What they seem to be 'forgetting' is that it was the flexibility and simplicity of the K-Cup system that actually gained them the dominant market share in the first place. Sure you can brew cappucinos and lattes with the Tassimo...but you can use your own favorite coffee brand with the Keurig My K-Cup reusable filter, freshly ground if that's your thing, or spooned out of a Maxwell House container to save money / env. wastage on each cup. Heck, I use my My K-Cup to hold loose tea leaves when I feel like a specialty cuppa...and they're good for two to three cups, too.

    Nope, if they disable their whole BYO ability, I predict that they will wind up in a small corner of a niche market. If they relent and provide a My K-Cup equivalent for the 2.0...well, it's just barely possible that they could survive this bone-headed move, although people will grumble about not having cheap generics available. Either way, watch for stock prices to plunge.

  • Re:Why? (Score:5, Informative)

    by AmiMoJo ( 196126 ) * <mojo@world3.nBLUEet minus berry> on Monday March 03, 2014 @07:13PM (#46391787) Homepage Journal

    I have not tried the Keurig but other coffee pod machines I have used and owned produce single cups of pretty damn good coffee, complete with frothed milk, and there is basically zero mess. No mucking about with filters and pots and grinding up beans and aerating milk and all that crap.

    Okay, if I could be bothered I could brew a slightly better cup the traditional way. But with pods I have variety and almost zero effort, ideal for work. It's a very small compromise for a very big gain.

  • Re:Why? (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 03, 2014 @07:28PM (#46391929)

    One word: Aeropress.

  • by Anubis IV ( 1279820 ) on Monday March 03, 2014 @08:04PM (#46392257)

    By my math, you're saving just $0.01/serving over a Keurig, and you're losing a lot more time on rote actions such as measuring out beans, grinding them, packing the grounds, and cleaning the equipment. Keurig users seem like they probably got the better end of that deal.

    As for my math...
    Assumption: For the sake of argument, the $120 Keurig only lasts for two years, just like your $30 Mr. Coffee
    Assumption: Coffee drinker drinks two cups a day for two years = 1460 servings
    Assumption: An average Keurig pod costs $0.50
    Cost of pods = 1460 servings * $0.50 = $730
    Cost of machine = $120
    Amortized cost = ($730 + $120) / 1460 servings = $0.58/serving

    I tried to base most of my assumptions on numbers that favored you. For instance, though most people buying pods are likely to buy them in bulk for well under $0.50, I went with $0.50 since it was roughly in the middle of the range of prices I was seeing on Amazon. I also assumed that the Keurig would fail after just two years, despite all anecdotal evidence I'm aware of indicating that it would likely last much longer. Similarly, I went with a low rate of consumption so that the higher cost of the Keurig machine would play a greater role in the amortized cost, thus favoring your argument.

    And yet, despite all of that, the difference was surprisingly just $0.01. I didn't game the numbers to try and get that result. It really did just happen to work out that way.

    TL;DR: I'm not recommending Keurig machines, but I also wouldn't suggest that your use case represents a cost savings of any significance. In fact, I'd argue that most people would rather incur the $0.01 cost in order to be free of the hassle of dealing with everything your machine involves.

Executive ability is deciding quickly and getting somebody else to do the work. -- John G. Pollard