Innovation Sighting: S.I.T. Patterns in Refrigerators

Innovation in the Mobile World
August 6, 2012
Academic Focus: University of Chicago Booth School of Business
August 20, 2012

Innovation Sighting: S.I.T. Patterns in Refrigerators

This month's Innovation Sighting comes to us from Dr. Steven Palter. Dr. Palter is a gynecologic fertility specialist and a true innovator in the medical field. He learned the S.I.T. method recently, so he knows how to spot the five innovation patterns of S.I.T. in everyday products and services. This one is a new refrigerator launched by LG at the 2012 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. It is the LGLFX31945ST French Door Refrigerator with Door-in-Door. The new Door-in-Door is a classic example of the Multiplication Technique. To use Multiplication, make a list of the components of the product, select a component and copy it, then change the copied component along some variable such as size, location, or other attribute. Once you create this Virtual Product, try to identify new benefits or markets served by this configuration.

This month’s Innovation Sighting comes to us from Dr. Steven Palter.  Dr. Palter is a  gynecologic fertility specialist and a true innovator in the medical field.  He learned the S.I.T. method recently, so he knows how to spot the five innovation patterns of S.I.T. in everyday products and services.

This one is a new refrigerator launched by LG at the 2012 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.  It is the LGLFX31945ST French Door Refrigerator with Door-in-Door.  The new Door-in-Door is a classic example of the Multiplication Technique.  To use Multiplication, make a list of the components of the product, select a component and copy it, then change the copied component along some variable such as size, location, or other attribute.  Once you create this Virtual Product, try to identify new benefits or markets served by this configuration.

In this example, the door was copied then changed to be located just inside the existing one.  It creates a whole new area for storing food.  This increases the storage capacity of the refrigerator without increasing the overall exterior size.  Take a look:

LG didn’t stop there. They also launched a new innovation in refrigerators called the LG Blast Chiller. It allows you to vary the temperature delivered to an item depending on the type of food or beverage. Does that pattern sound familiar?  If you have studied the S.I.T. method, you would recognize the Attribute Dependency pattern. Take a look:

Very cool! I like using refrigerators in my S.I.T. training sessions because there are so many ways to apply the five techniques to yield new-to-the-world innovations.  Most people find it surprising that you can innovate a concept that dates back the ancient Egyptians.