100_6109Keurig has developed a 2.0 series of machines, which adds something new to their K-Cup using brewers. Now you also have the option of using larger, “K-Carafe” cups and brewing up to 4 cups, as well as the 1 cup method Keurig users are used to. The brewer comes with a black carafe, and includes a sample box with 4 K-Cups and 2 of the new Carafe cups.

The Keurig 2.0 brewers require Keurig brand K-cups, and not all K-Cups work, I’ve discovered. The K-Cups that will work with this machine have a circle with a check on them that says good for all Keurigs on the outside of the box. The machine is RFID limited, meaning that other cups won’t work in the machine.

This limiting factor is a con for me. The company promotes the new carafe brewing feature as making the machine more flexible and versatile for use, but the flexibility of using a wider range of K-Cups, as the older Keurigs had, would have been a better selling point. Instead, even though the documentation tries to assure the customer that Keurig is “making sure you get the perfect beverage every time”, we have what is very clearly a company wanting to have the monopoly on coffee that can be used with it’s machine. They want you to have to buy their proprietary K-cups every single time for the machine. Ones that have the Keurig brand on them. Even though there are hundreds of other coffee brands producing K-cups already, Keurig wants to end those options with the 2.0 brewer. This really doesn’t look good on the part of Keurig, even with their explanations, it just looks like an attempt to make as much money as possible from the consumer while disallowing other companies to have a part of the K-cup market, rather than leaving the customer with more freedom of choice with their beverages. This would be about as sensible as if my toaster demanded a certain brand of bread from the company that manufactured the toaster.

I also would have preferred to see the company include a reusable cup that the user could fill with their own grounds, even if it had filters that had to be purchased separately. I feel like with the cost range of Keurigs, something like this should be included in the box and not something that had to be bought separately, whether from Keurig themselves or from another company. If the aim is to advertise the machine as being versatile and truly convenient, than this would be a good way to do so and live up to that claim. Once again, the absence of something like a reusable filter (one of which came included with a 50$ machine we have) seems to prove that Keurig wants you to spend more money with them, and with the price of the machine…even if all you bought was the machine, that should satisfy the company.

Included with the machine’s documentation was a card asking me to register the produce in exchange for a “free” treat. So naturally I went to Keurig.com to find out what this offer was all about. Turns out it’s a coupon for 2 “free” boxes of K-Cups. There’s two catches though. The coupon’s only good on Keurig’s own website, and, it’s buy 2, get 2 free. A nice offer, but not entirely a free treat, and once again, and compounded with the other things I’ve mentioned, it just looks like even more of a money grab, as though they’re trying to squeeze every cent out of everything that they possibly can.

Now, all that said, there is a lot I do like about this machine. And a few small hitches that kept my experience with it from being perfect.

Morning Coffee

I really like the touch screen, the menus are user friendly, very readable, and clean. I also really like the lighting in the water reservoir. It’s beautiful. The color options are a really nice touch, too. We’ve chosen to have ours with the blue light. I do think it’d look better with brighter reservoir lights. I feel like the current brightness is trying to be subtle, but ends up being too subtle. Especially if you want it to function as a practical night light. I really like the programmable nightlight feature, it‘s a nice touch. This machine has a lot of neat features that sure weren’t present in my mother’s coffee maker. And I do really like the overall look of the thing, it has a lot of aesthetic appeal. I like a clear, bold clock display, it’s easy to see from across the room.

I like that you can choose to have your coffee stronger with a touch, and the selector for cup size. I can see the carafe being handy when there’s company or family around, as that was the case when we tried the first of the two included carafe cups. I like the water reservoir’s placement, how visible it is, and how easy it is to remove it when needed.

I like how fast this thing brews, too. And the smell from that first cup of Vanilla Hazelnut coffee was wonderful. What I didn’t like was the floater I saw atop my first cup – a piece of plastic from the K-Cup. That aside (and of course, removed), I settled in to my first cup of Keurig 2.0 brewed coffee and I must say it was really good. The flavour was great. I was expecting a good cup of coffee from this machine and I wasn’t disappointed. The floater issue hasn’t appeared since, so it seems it was just fluke.

If you don’t mind spending the money, if you can find compatible cups easily, and you really like your coffee, than this machine is great. If you want real flexibility, affordability, and versatility…this probably isn’t the thing for you, unless you search out and buy a refillable K-Cup that will work with the machine.

I received this product complimentary from Influenster for testing purposes.