People have been using a kettle over a wood fire for hundreds of years, and on top of stoves for almost as long. But in the last century, electric kettles have made heating water fast, easy, and safe.
The first electric kettle with the heat source immersed in the water was invented in 1922 by the Swan company, but the element in this kettle was inside a metal tube. In 1923 Arthur L. Large created the first kettle with the actual heating element immersed in the water, allowing the water to heat up extremely fast.
One safety benefit of the electric kettle is that the handle stays cool, making it easier to hold onto with less risk of burning
Most electric kettles today have an automatic switch which turns the kettle off once the water boils.
Another safety feature of today's electric kettles is a boil-dry mechanism which senses if the kettle is dry and automatically shuts off.
Electric kettles also have a thermal fuse which stops the electrical current if it senses abnormally high heat.