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Gadgets & Gizmos

From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Get some help with your Thanksgiving turkey

13

November

igrill.jpg

Are you making a list for the Thanksgiving feast? If you want a turkey cooked perfectly, you should put this gadget on your shopping list as well -- an iGrill. 

This a meat thermometer that can be connected to your smartphone via Bluetooth, and lets you monitor the temperatures remotely (range of about 200 feet) using a free app. Yes, that means you don't have to hover over the stove as much, letting you visit your friends and family for the gathering while it's cooking. The alarm will go off on your phone to let you know when the meat is ready. 
 
I tested out the iGrill a few times, and found it easy to use with perfect results each time. The gadget has two ports for temperature probes (included). 
 
To get the iGrill to work, you have to pair the device to your smartphone, standard procedures here, nothing unusual. Once paired, and the probe inserted into the meat, launch the app on the phone for temperature settings. Select from presets and subsets, like Beef, cooked Rare, Medium Rare, Medium, Medium Well, or Well Done. Or if you'd rather use your custom settings, you can create and save them for future use.  
 
When the meat reaches the predetermined temperature, the alarm will go off with "Your food is ready" notification. If you want something different, you can customize and save your own alarm setting. You can even use your favorite tune. One thing to remember. Make sure your phone's volume is up so you can hear the alarm. I accidentally missed an alarm because I had set mine to vibrate. Also know that the alarm won't sound when you're talking on the phone. 
 
You can also use the iGrill independent of the phone app as a meat thermometer, ambient temperature thermometer or timer. 
 
If you do get this gadget, I recommend spending the time to read the instructions. There are a few quirks you be familiar with, including how to reset the device before each use, and how to properly turn it off after you disconnect from the Bluetooth. 
 
Some parts of the device feel flimsy (like the stand), so store it away carefully. If you're using the gadget on an open grill, keep the probe cords away from flames (or anything hotter than 500 degrees).
 
Until recently, the iGrill was available only for iOS devices: iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad. But it's now available for some Android devices as well. 
 
The free app is available on the Apple iTunes App Store or Google Play. The iGrill device retails for $79.99 and available at store.igrillinc.com (look for a $10 off code on the website), AT&T stores, Apple.comamazon.com and other retailers.

[Last modified: Tuesday, November 13, 2012 5:19pm]

    

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