Published July 1, 2011. From Cook's Illustrated.
What could be better than a remote thermometer that talks to your iPhone, transmitting constant readouts of your meat’s temperature and even predicting when it will be done?
We put steaks on the grill and monitored them with the iGrill ($99.99), a two-part device that communicates via Bluetooth with the iPhone, iPod Touch, or iPad, along with our favorite (and far cheaper) remote thermometer. The latter beeps when food is within 10 degrees of a target. The good news: The iGrill offers a range comparable to our favorite remote thermometer, letting us wander 200 feet from the base unit while still receiving readouts. Even when our phone went into “sleep’’ mode, the iGrill stayed in touch, waking up to report when a target temperature had been reached. What’s more, we could even reset the temperature remotely via our phone. The bad news: The iGrill occasionally gave us readouts that were 2 to 3 degrees cooler than measurements taken directly with our gold standard instant-read thermometer. It also communicates with just one Bluetooth device at a time, and switching to another one is an involved process. Finally, the digital readout of the temperature on the base unit was too faint to be visible in daylight, so using it during the day without a Bluetooth device isn’t feasible. With these flaws, and at this price, we can’t wholeheartedly recommend the iGrill. We’ll be on the lookout for version 2.0.