Just when you thought the home phone was dead and gone, Invoxia has come up with a new home for it: Your refrigerator. Triby, which debuted at CES Unveiled tonight, is a little box that sticks to your fridge and lets you make free WiFi calls to anyone. And unlike the old corded phone that lived in your kitchen decades ago, this one can also play music over Bluetooth (and it has an FM radio to boot). While it may seem kind of superfluous now that everyone, even many kids, have smartphones of their own, Triby might be compelling to families who are always in the kitchen. You can also assign a few numbers to buttons on its front so kids can quickly ring mom and dad. Its E-Ink screen lets it last for around seven months without a charge, and you can also send cute hand drawn messages to the screen from the Triby app.
Invoxia has actually been in the corporate teleconferencing business for some time now (Triby connects to its own VoIP nework), but a representative tells me its now looking to move into the home. Specifically, it’s trying to address problems that smartphones can’t solve for some consumers, like having a central phone for the entire family. And it’s yet another sign that voice chat is something that’s moving far beyond our phones. Invoxia says Triby will retail for around $199 when it hits this summer.