Several years ago, a company named Astone developed a really cool inflatable mini washing machine. Currently, even the smallest mini washers including our Wonderwash are too large for travel, unless you are in an RV. However this invention uses a novel approach by making the 4 walls out of an inflatable material. So when it’s not in use, you let the air out and it folds down to a very small size that can easily fit in a suitcase. Weighing only 4.4 lbs. it’s not going to make your suitcase much heavier or become overweight. While designed for travelers, it would also be a great fit for small apartments where space is at a premium.
It also uses an impeller instead of an agitator to maximize washing space. Agitators have their benefits, but the main drawback is they waste a lot of inner tub space.
To top it off it has a very cute, stylish design, with “hands” printed on the transparent inflatable walls.
For some reason the product apparently never went to market. It’s not clear if someone in management killed the project feeling it didn’t have enough sales potential, or if they had some technical problems such as leakage. We find this surprising, because unlike most concept washing machines, this one is actually very feasible from a technical point of view.
What do you think? Is this a project you’d like to see us tackle in the future?