A Design Probe by definition needs to be as provocative as possible in order to attract and generate enough discussion and ideas around it as possible. A Design Probe will eventually lead the researchers to insights into our (people/consumer) mind and in particular get insights on future preferences.
Therefore Philips seems to have conceived a full program around the concept of Design Probes, certainly in an effort to continuously tap and track future trends that may open doors into mainstream issues and potentially future business solutions for them.
Here’s two of the several examples coming out of the program:
Future of Food
Off the Grid