'Shark Tank's Icy Breeze Is Perfect For Summer
It's not really the best time of year to think about cooling down, considering that a major winter storm just did that for much of the nation. But I guess since Shark Tank tapes in Los Angeles, they're still feeling the heat, so they might be open to the idea of giving an amazing deal to the Icy Breeze, a cooler that also acts as a portable air conditioner. If you can imagine sitting on a hot beach instead of underneath a pile of blankets, the idea is pretty genius. However, the key question is — does the Icy Breeze actually work? Because if not, using all of the cold air that's keeping your sandwiches chilly into an ineffectual light breeze seems pretty disappointing.
Luckily, according to the Icy Breeze website, there's a lot of science behind their chilly claims. "Cold water is drawn up into the sophisticated heat exchanger in the unit's top. Fresh air is pulled into the top and across the heat exchanger, cooling the air drastically. A cool, icy breeze is then dispensed in the direction of the user's choosing. The power and speed of the dispensed air is comparable to that of an automobile's air conditioner output," it explains. And even though they compare the cooler's mechanism to a car, it runs on a battery that lasts up to six hours — but the charging process can take five hours, so Icy Breeze is clearly meant to be used over short periods of time.
Presuming it works well, the biggest drawback to the Icy Breeze is definitely the price. You can buy the Icy Breeze on Amazon, but the smallest/cheapest unit costs $250, which is comparable to the cost of an actual air conditioning unit (and the larger sizes can cost over $400). I can understand why it's more expensive than the typical Styrofoam cooler you can pick up at the local supermarket, but at that cost, the Icy Breeze team is likely seriously limiting the number of casual beachgoers or campers who will be picking up their product. However, maybe that's one of their plans once they get a deal in the Tank — potentially lower their manufacturing costs, thereby allowing them to lower the price.
But there's one more huge red flag that might impact the Sharks' reaction to the Icy Breeze. At the bottom of the product's homepage are two words no Shark wants to hear before signing a check: "Patent Pending." And a quick Google search for "cooler air conditioner" yields quite a few DIY versions of the Icy Breeze that certainly come a lot cheaper than their product.
So it will be up to Oklahoma-based creators David Yonce and Jason Shackleford, who will be appearing on the show, to pitch the product successfully. And some good sales won't hurt either. But with a willingness to adjust their price and lock down that patent, Icy Breeze could become Shark Tank's biggest hit of Summer 2016.
Image: Beth Dubber/ABC