In 2008, Robert Wang lost his job at a mobile messaging company he’d co-founded in 2000 and decided to turn his attention toward a personal issue. He and his wife both worked full-time, but still needed a way to put healthy meals on the table for their family of four each night. Wang was inspired by the Crock-Pot and the electric pressure cookers that were popular in his native China. He was especially interested in addressing the pain points of consumers who cooked at home with electrical appliances. Over 18 months, he used his Ph.D. in computer science and background in artificial intelligence to create the first iteration of the Instant Pot, which he released on Amazon in October 2010 after testing it with his daughter. It combined the functions of multiple devices to save counter space and featured a burn protection mechanism. Over time, interest in the Instant Pot grew and reached a fever pitch in 2016, when Amazon sold out of its 215,00 available units on Prime Day. Its fanbase has only grown since then, with cookbooks and blogs devoted to Instant Pot recipes. There are now multiple versions of the Instant Pot available and the company regularly comes out with new ones.