Budweiser 'smart' beer fridge encourages drinking on the job

The new 'Bud-E Fridge' IoT smart refrigerator automatically orders more beer for you and your coworkers when supplies get low, and it's available for a limited time for free, if you're located in Chicago, New York or Los Angeles.

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Anheuser-Busch

Those wacky folks over at Anheuser-Busch (AB) are always up to some PR stunt designed to draw attention away from all the beer-guzzling customers it's losing in droves to craft beer brewers. Either that or they're buying one of those breweries that makes the latest double India pale ale, or DIPA if you're a hipster beer nerd like me. 

Today, AB issued a press release about a new, free beer refrigerator it's calling the "Bud-E Fridge" that is meant for use in corporate offices. And, yes, it's free, at least for offices in Chicago, New York and Los Angeles. 

The Bud-E Fridge was created in partnership with IoT company Buzz Digital. As such, it's internet-connected. It holds as many as 180 cold ones at a time, and when the fridge gets low, it calls in the backup by contacting your local Bud delivery service and ordering reinforcements. The fridges are available in six designs based on AB brands: Bud Light, Budweiser, Shock Top, Goose Island, Blue Point and Golden Road.

[Related: What smartphones, craft beer and Ferris Bueller say about change]

AB is even offering customer service Monday through Friday, from noon to 9 p.m. EST, just in case your Bud-E starts misbehaving right before happy hour.

Though the Bud-E Fridge itself is apparently free to businesses (for now), the beer probably isn't. Oh, and hey, don't tell AB, but you could request a free fridge for your office and then fill it with some good other beer of your choice.

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