You may have seen SodaStream in stores like Best Buy and Staples in the last few months. The system allows you to make your own soda, using a combination of proprietary CO2 cartridges and super-concentrated syrups. While carbonators of this sort have been popular in Europe for ages, they’ve only recently started to make an impact in North America. A wide variety of different syrups are available, and customers can finally create their own “Suicides” right at home.
Bloomberg reports that access to SodaStream will be getting a lot more convenient in the near future for some new refrigerator buyers:
SodaStream said yesterday that sparkling water dispensers using its system will be available in refrigerators built by Samsung, the Korean company that controls more than 13 percent of the global market. The four-door appliance will be sold in the U.S. in April at $3,899, the companies said in a statement. Airport City, Israel-based SodaStream will next week report record sales of $425 million for 2012, according to the mean estimate of eight analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.
“The more convenient it is for a customer to make their own sparkling water, the more they’re going to use SodaStream,” Jim Chartier, an analyst at Monness, Crespi, Hardt & Co. who rates the stock buy, said by phone yesterday from New York. “It takes the carbonation system from that thing sitting on your countertop taking up space to walking up to your fridge and pushing a button.” The agreement with Samsung will have a “significant impact” on long-term sales, he said.
And that’s all well and good, but potential customers who think they’ll save tons money are probably in for a bit of sticker shock. As it turns out, SodaStream isn’t as economical as the buzz would lead you to believe. Of course, getting your carbonated water straight from the tap will cut down on the biggest day-to-day expense of buying into DIY soda, but there’s no word yet on whether these fancy fridges will be easily refillable, or whether they’ll instead require you to buy SodaStream’s expensive proprietary CO2 cannisters. If you were able, for example, to take advantage of $2 CO2 refills at the local welding supply store or home-brewing store, that would make our tummies, and wallets, a lot happier. (Or you could be sneaky and do it yourself now.)