Instead of a normal kettle, we switched to a hotcup. We have a Breville Hotcup fixed and a Breville Hotcup variable, and there are other brands like the Vonhaus, but we haven’t tried those. The variable liquid one is better if you’re going to use it yourself, but if you have carers, stick to the fixed quantity dispenser as we have found that roughly two thirds of carers never move the dial on the dispenser. (So if you yourself do change the dial, and leave it on max you get spillages, and if you leave it on min you get half a cup of tea.) In the end I put the variable hotcup in my study and bought a fixed one for the kitchen. The fixed version follows our design principles of:

  • Remove all non-essential choices.
  • Always make the right choice the easiest choice.

It saves money, obviously, but it’s also very useful for people who can’t lift an ordinary kettle to pour it. You can fill it up in-situ with a jug or you can fill it under the tap, but then you don’t need to lift to pour - it dispenses the boiling water into the cup for you.

All of those things aside, I bought this when I was very severely sleep deprived (24/7 carer, oy) and was just boiling the same water over and over again because I couldn’t remember I was making tea. You can’t buy a whistling electric kettle (I could never find one) and my stovetop one didn’t work on my induction hob, so I was in dire need of tea by the time I found this. It was great and solved that problem completely, although admittedly I did then sometimes discover cold cups of stewed tea left under the spout… So I recommend it for memory problems too!