Unitasker Wednesday: Personal microwave

Personal MicrowaveI never thought Sharper Image supplied consumers with practical goods until I came across the iwavecube Personal Microwave. Yes, it is about time we all had our own personal microwaves to carry with us. From Sharper Image:

How incredibly convenient — a personal, portable microwave! Forget all those trips to the kitchen or treks to the cafeteria — now you can reheat coffee right at your desk; or nuke some soup for your brown-bag lunch; or pop some `corn in the entertainment room.

While other suckers are walking all the way to the kitchen to nuke their soup in the microwave, you can hang out in your entertainment room while your soup gets nuked right next to your couch. Add this thing to a mini-fridge and you may never need to venture off to your kitchen again. More from Shaper Image:

Plug it in anyplace that’s handy — work or home office; home gym; family room; nursery; wet bar; dorm room; work bench; pool house, everywhere! The quiet, super-energy-efficient iwavecube measures just 10″ x 10.5″ x 12″ and weighs only 12 lbs. Features a built-in carry handle and view-through door.

The next time I’m rocking my daughter to sleep in the nursery, it will be great to have corn popping right next to us. That will certainly help her nod off to dream land. Less walking and more popping in 2008!

**Unitasker Wednesday posts humorously poke fun at the single-use items that manage to find their way into our homes.

32 Comments for “Unitasker Wednesday: Personal microwave”

  1. posted by anonymous on

    You know whats sad? If it wasn’t for your commentary I’d probably see a lot of these “unitaskers” and really think they were products I would need to use! Lol. Thank you for putting me in my place and helping me realize I really don’t need a carrying handle on my microwave!

  2. posted by Bill on

    Silly perhaps, but how is it more of a unitasker than any other microwave?

  3. posted by Gayle on

    I think this is marketed incorrectly. If it was marketed for Small Spaces it would be perfect as your ONLY microwave, with such a small footprint. I could see a use in a garage or out-building workspace, as well.

    A secondary microwave in the same house is kinda dumb though.

  4. posted by Crystal Unrau on

    You know – when I started reading I was thinking “What the heck – that’s dumb. Cause we really need MORE reasons not to leave the couch!” Glad it was a joke, I totally missed that, lol. People are SO lazy!!

    To be fair – I could see this being a wonderful actual kitchen item for a single person/couple with a very small kitchen or for a truck driver. Or for in the RV.

  5. posted by melissa on

    Usually I love your Unitaskers, but I’m with Gayle on this one – I just see it as a small footprint microwave that would really save counter space in your kitchen. We hardly ever use our microwave for anything bigger than a small bowl, so why have a huge microwave taking up space all the time? Ignore the handle and it’s actually very useful indeed.

  6. posted by Gwen B. on

    It should be sold in combination with the Portable miniFRIDGE with power adaptor.

    You can now have your cold beer and hot wings (or other favorite nukeable treat) without leaving the comfort of your couch.

  7. posted by Sairen on

    Please explain something to me: I’ve seen in the comments on this site several times objections to microwaves or people saying they almost never use theirs. The first thing that pops into my head: Don’t you guys ever heat up leftovers? I use my microwave every single day… leftovers for dinner, cooking frozen veggies, hot teas and chocolates, a quick zap for tortillas to make them soft, even a neck wrap pillow goes into the ol’ device…
    Do you use the oven for all these things? Why? Not saying the people who eschew microwaves are wrong, I just don’t get it!

  8. posted by Ira on

    Honestly Sairen, no I don’t use my microwave for left overs. I pretty much loathe my microwave (and if it weren’t for my roommate my house wouldn’t have one). I use the oven for almost everything, I think food that comes out of the microwave just flat out tastes bad.

    And on a different note, while I do acknowledge that a portable microwave is a dumb idea. I can see how it’d be useful for microwaving bottles in a nursery. In the middle of the night, to tired parents of a newborn, that trek to the kitchen with a screaming baby can be a tough one. But then again, we’ve survived this long with portable microwaves.

  9. posted by Kate Saltfleet on

    Safety – never ever heat baby’s bottle in a microwave! (portable or otherwise).

  10. posted by Karen on

    It sounds great for my cubicle at work. We don’t have a break room, and the office area is so tiny that there’s no room for a “communal” microwave. The cafeteria is another building several blocks away. I wouldn’t mind stashing it under my desk so I wouldn’t have to eat cold sandwiches every day. I’m too cheap to spend the money, but this is one unitasker I’d be glad to have.

  11. posted by Sarah on

    Seeing as how the only exercise the couch potatoes get is the trek from couch to kitchen, that bit of walking needs to be eliminated. forthwith!

  12. posted by Karen on

    I used to be a traveling salesman, and I carried a small microwave in the trunk of my car. It was great to be able to make breakfast in my room, especially when I was staying in places that weren’t too well equipped (okay, I’ll say it, they were dives).

  13. posted by Kathryn on


    We may be the minority, but you’re not alone in your microwave luv. I use mine several times every day–to heat up coffee in the morning, heat up leftovers for lunch, steam fresh or frozen veggies for dinner, defrost meat, make simple prepared noodle dishes (e.g., mac-n-cheese, lipton noodle stuff, etc.)…I even bake things like cornbread and brownies when I’m pinched for time.

  14. posted by Shannon on

    I’m a microwave lover too. I was talking to a friend recently who said that he didn’t have one, and I couldn’t believe it. I use mine for everything (oatmeal, hot tea, frozen meals, popcorn, leftovers, defrosting, etc.)

    Yes, I know I could cook things in pans, but that dirties a pan. Why not cook it in the same bowl in which I’m going to eat it? I could make tea in a tea kettle and air pop my popcorn, but that would require a tea kettle and a popper, and my tiny apartment has no cupboard space. I could prepare all my own fresh food for every meal, but I’m a law student with no time. I hope there will be time and space for such luxuries later in life, but right now, my microwave is a multi-tasking friend.

  15. posted by popoff on

    Actually it is not a good example for the unitasker, as the microwave is very handy not only for a cooking but also for usuall office processes, like shreding old data cd-r discs or even for the education and entertainment – there are loads of things one may burn, explode , cook and do anything else with using microwave radiation (or whatever it is called) either to learn a really important things or simply just for fun.
    In a matter of fact I’ve always wanted to have my own microwave.

  16. posted by Anna N. on

    This would be fabulous for a dorm room – dorm shared kitchens are disgusting – or (as someone else mentioned) an office/cubicle in a building without a break room or kitchen. As a portable device, I can see it as useful for anyone who is on the road constantly, truckers, etc.

    That’s assuming it works decently well, of course, but the idea is there.

  17. posted by Kris on

    My first thought was bar (some drinks are better warm), boat, RV, dorm room, hotel room, etc. It could come in handy.

  18. posted by spark on

    I have to agree with Gayle on this one. This is not necessarily a unitasker. It is marketed as one, who the heck really does need a “personal microwave”? This description basically says that there is a communal or family microwave somewhere but you can “have your own!” if you want it.

    But marketed as a “small space microwave” or “micro-microwave”, it wouldn’t be a unitasker at all. If you’ve ever lived in a teeny tiny studio without a stove, you know the value of a microwave, especially one that doesn’t take up half of the 3 foot long counter space you do have.

    Many dorms do not have kitchens for students, some are lucky enough to have a soda machine but nothing else. So a small microwave in the dorm room would be great.

    And I second the responses from others, RV, office where no break room exists (yes there are some like that), etc.

    I even agree with some of the suggestions from Sharper Image, the pool house or guest house…who’s gonna go to the main house to use the microwave? (Or maybe having a pool/guest house is just acreage clutter?)

    I just disagree with the post this week. Maybe you could have a “Poorly-marketed-device-looks-like-a-dumb-idea…

  19. posted by David on

    It’s only unsafe to warm a baby’s bottle in a microwave if you’re too dumb to check the temperature of the milk before giving it to the baby.

    Give it a good shake, check the temp, give to baby. Worked just fine for us and our two kids.

  20. posted by Katie on

    I don’t think my family’s first microwave was much bigger than this! And that one mounted under the counter to save space.

  21. posted by Tanya on

    a small microwave is a wonderful thing. I was hoping to someday have one on the outer side of a kitchen island.

    That way, the people who wander into the kitchen to reheat their coffee or make popcorn won’t get in the way of the person who’s making dinner – they can do all that without actually stepping into the kitchen.

  22. posted by dorothy on

    It’s always unsafe to heat plastic baby bottles in a microwave because the volatile chemicals in most plastics leach into the milk or formula when microwaved, not because the temperature of the liquid might be too hot. Microwaving glass bottles is probably fine, but I can count the number of people I know using glass bottles on the fingers of one hand.

  23. posted by pop on

    If you have this microwave in your cubicle, other suckers are walking all the way to the kitchen to nuke their soup in the microwave will use your microwave as well.
    And the bad thing is, they will burn their popcorn, or spoil their soup because they forgot to pick it up while working overtime, and YOU will end up cleaning it up.

    Bad idea altogether.Hehe.
    I love to browse Sharper Image catalogs…just to see what they’re making to fill our already-overcrowded landfill.Very sharp.

  24. posted by David on

    Ah, the “microwaving plastic is bad” urban legend rears it’s head …


  25. posted by Sophia on

    that snopes page says it’s better to use heat resistance glass, ceramics or stainless steel for heating (scroll to bottom), even though it is an urban legend that heating plastic contains dioxins and causes cancer.

  26. posted by Mo on

    Sometimes Snopes gets things wrong, btw! Last I checked, they weren’t a cancer research laboratory (nor were we people supposed to presume ourselves educated on health issues because we’d read our e-mail forwards). But science itself is pretty sure about soft plastics and carcinogens.


    Microwaves are good for leftovers. If you’re not buying a 2nd nuker, are living solo and/or don’t need to heat large things, what’s the problem with owning a small one? I don’t own one at all, but as a result find myself sautéing leftover penne all too often. Heh.

  27. posted by Amanda on

    Hey, Hasn’t anyone said the bvious (and apologies if I missed it)? THis giant doodad, cost $129.99 plus shipping (and FWIW all that packing to send it)?

    Any of you rich kids priced microwaves lately – big, medium, little?

    This is WAY expensive for a little microwave. There are nive small ones for $50 and less at Walmarts. I’ve been shoppng for them lately for my son’s dorm room.

    As Mark Trail would say: “What th-??”

    What’s more, Americans NEED to walk! Too many of us live in a portable cocoon with all we need within rach already. Those steps add up to HEALTH.

    I’ve got a REAL time saver. A portapotty – with a handle, of course! Imagine. No more wasteful trips to the loo! As a matter of fact, suffering from urge incontence for neurological and bladder raasons, I DO have old (qt) yogurt containers in many strategic locatrions for just this purpose. Ah, now how to market it?

    Won’t get started for now, on the trend to all-in-one gadgets and apliances. Grrr. (Or “When does a palm pilot manager become a computer become a phone become an entertainment center?” Note order of items may be reversed in the question)

  28. posted by Amanda on

    Vanity bids me inform the no one who cares, that I accidentally sent the pre-edit version of thhe above entry…

  29. posted by lisa on

    I found this blog thanks to a link from Real Simple. All I want to say is “thank you, thank you, thank you”. the more I read the more I laugh. effin fantastic. more poppin’ less walking in 08, genius.

  30. posted by Fred on

    Microwaving plastic is bad? Chicken Little lives again.

  31. posted by SKS on

    I think this is a great idea. I have been looking for a way for my husband to have something other that sandwiches everyday. He works in the oilfield and has enough room for a lunch box sized microwave… you can’t find those at walmart! Think about a nice cup of hot chocolate for the construction workers or santa’s outside of stores, there are many uses besides the few shallow minded ones listed above. GREAT IDEA GUYS TWO THUMBS UP!

    I do agree they could be a little more reasonable on the price but all and all the working people (the ones that really do physical work in the weather day after day) will love this idea!

  32. posted by Melissa on

    I may be alone in this, but I thought it would be most convenient to heat up wax – for the waxing that you generally do in the bathroom. I agree that the price is too much, but think it would eliminate that awkward walk from bath to kitchen sans clothes when the was needs to be reheated because it has cooled too much. It would sure be a time saver. Oops, I may have said too much.

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