I try and keep broadly abreast of technical change, but mainly at the "big picture" level, that is, significant step-changes and the like. But I don't attempt to keep up with all the incremental developments in gadgetry. So I was a bit blind-sided when the "quiet kettle" arrived in our kitchen. I inquired, is it really effective? And, anyway, what's the point?
The answers are, yes, it does what it purports to do (it's thicker, somewhat like a thermos) - but note that it's "quiet", not silent (so you still hear the water boiling, but it's muted). And the point is, it doesn't drown out the radio (but as to whether that is a "good thing", well, obviously "it depends").
Whether every kitchen needs one - I think the jury is still out on that issue!
EDIT: It has since occurred to me that there may yet be further improvements to be made. Perhaps an alarm to tell you when the water has boiled? An electronic whistle, maybe? EDIT of EDIT: I stand corrected (thanks to abg). It does indeed "ting" when it turns itself off at boiling point. The "ting" is definitely not as loud as the whistle that kettles had circa 1960, but there again, they were on the stove and the whistle was needed because they didn't automatically turn themselves off.