Seven most unused appliances shamed in Choice survey

By Matthew Henry

SYDNEY: Choice magazine today published its “what not to buy for Christmas” hitlist, naming the seven most unused appliances as voted by its readership and alarmingly for Sunbeam and Breville, the wine chiller was voted number one.

Choice claims 1000 subscribers responded to its survey asking them to name and shame their most useless gift, and heading the list was the wine chiller – a product popularised by both Breville and Sunbeam in recent years, which claims to be able to rapidly chill a bottle of wine in under 10 minutes.

Breville declined to comment on the report when contacted by, however, Sunbeam provided this short statement.

"As with all Christmas gifts, some things are used more often than others depending on how well you match the recipient with the gift,” said Sunbeam marketing manager – kitchen appliances, Damian Court.

“This year our biggest hits were espresso machines, Food Saver and our ionic technology hair dryers."

Choice listed the “top useless gadgets” as:
Electric wine chiller
Aromatherapy diffuser
Electric ice shaver
Foot spa
Ice cream maker
Vertical grill
Milk frother

Despite the meteoric rise of coffee machine to become the largest category in the small appliance market, consumers apparently found little use for handheld milk frothers.

“Another new-fangled gadget which has not measured up for Australian consumers in the age of café culture is the handheld milk frother – some people swear by them but there’s a 15 per cent chance you’ll never use it,” said Choice media spokesperson, Indira Naidoo.

“Pedometers were all the rage earlier this year as Australia did battle with the bulge, but 13 per cent of respondents said theirs is now gathering dust.”

As for the most appreciated gifts, Choice named electric toothbrushes, USB keys and toasted sandwich makers (which some households still refer to as ‘Brevilles’) as sure winners that will not be consigned to the dark recesses of the cupboard.

And in a reprieve for novelty appliance makers, one ABC Radio listener in Sydney called in this morning to praise her pie maker, which she claimed had been given a workout during the school holiday period.

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