A few years ago, the R&D team at Delta Faucet Co. recruited homeowners to shoot video of themselves while they went about normal activities in the kitchen. (There was a second group who were paid to be videoed while taking a shower, but that’s a different story.)
The R&D team then watched hundreds of hours of people washing vegetables, wiping countertops, and running water over dirty dishes. Excruciatingly boring? Perhaps. Highly productive? Absolutely. One of the insights that came from this exercise was that many people would turn on the water while they were cooking and leave it running the whole time in order to avoid having to clean the faucet. “You really saw it happen if the chef had ‘chicken hands,’” says Mary Ahlbrand, a channel manager with Delta. “Nobody wants to waste water, but that’s what was happening.”
One response to this problem—touchless faucets—were a step in the right direction, but didn’t completely solve the issue. Those products are hands-free, like the faucets in airport bathrooms, and “people don’t want that in their kitchen,” Ahlbrand says. “Instead, they want to have [better] control when their water goeson and off.”
And so, in 2008, Delta introduced its Touch2O technology. The advancement allowed users to turn the faucet on and off by briefly touching any part of the spout or handle with any part of their hand or arm. (A totally hands-free version for the bathroom debuted in 2011.)
Judging from product reviews, Touch2O has had a few glitches along the way, but the feature is still a perennial favorite with homeowners. There are a number of models that incorporate the technology, and the latest one, the Trinsic Pro, was introduced in late 2016.
While the overall concept remains the same, the Pro has a more industrial design that replaces the Trinsic’s plain spout with a hip-looking coiled version. “We’re finding the desire for a commercial kitchen continues to grow,” Ahlbrand says. “People want that look, and that’s why this was designed.” There are also a number of new and insightful market-driven features, including the spout itself, which can easily be disconnected and swivels 360 degrees to give users free range of motion. The coils were purposely kept tight to keep out dirt and debris. Delta also added a magnet so that the pull-down spray wand stays in place when not in use.
The Trinsic Pro debuted in Chrome and Arctic finishes, and Delta is now introducing a black stainless option that will begin shipping in December. “It will coordinate well with black appliances,” Ahlbrand says. “People are starting to move away from the bronze. We still see it, but the popularity is slowly decreasing.”
The Trinsic Pro is ADA-compliant and is available with or without the touch feature.