Innovation That Matters

The pepper grinder that turns off phones at dinner time

Work & Lifestyle

The Dolmio Pepper Hacker is a covert technology off-switch hidden inside a pepper grinder which shuts off technology for 30 minutes.

Smart devices have transformed family dinners from a time to connect with loved ones into a feast of technology, much to the despair of parents. That is the basis of the latest marketing campaign from Dolmio in Australia. The pasta sauce brand has created the Dolmio Pepper Hacker — a technology off-switch hidden inside a pepper grinder, which enables Australian mums to covertly shut off all technology for 30 minutes.

Created with the help of marketing agencies Clemenger BBDO Sydney, Pollen, Starcom and Ogilvy PR, Dolmio provided a number of homes with the Pepper Hacker and secretly filmed the result. User’s simply twist the device as usual, seasoning their food and switching off any electrical products connected to the mains in the process, as well as smartphones connected to the AirWatch app — a management app that can remotely lock a device.


We have seen a number of innovations designed to encourage people to put their tech away when they should be concentrating on something else — such as Pocket Points, which rewards college students for ignoring their iPhones during class. Perhaps a similar device to the pepper grinder could be used in such scenarios to remove the temptation of the screen altogether?



Download PDF