Microsoft Hohm outs home energy hogs

Microsoft's Hohm energy monitoring service can now detail energy use by appliance

Microsoft has expanded its Hohm energy monitoring portal so home owners can see, directly from their personal computers, how much power their homes use.

The Hohm service can now ingest data from a wireless energy tracking device offered by Blue Line Innovations, called PowerCost Monitor, Microsoft announced Tuesday. The combined offering graphs energy usage within a household, showing an up-to-the-minute longitudinal summary of how much energy is being consumed.

In a blog entry on the Hohm site, Microsoft Hohm general manager Troy Batterberry, said this partnership with Blue Line is another step in Microsoft's plan to create an entire home-based "ecosystem" of energy-aware appliances and devices, such as light bulbs, smart appliances and electric cars.

"We see a future where -- through Hohm -- all of these things can work together seamlessly to provide everyone with convenient tools to understand, manage and reduce their energy use," he wrote

The PowerCost Monitor is a device that can be attached to the home's electric meter that reads the meter's display of how much power has been consumed. A wireless device uploads data to a personal computer, which in turn, relays the data to the Hohm portal where it can be aggregated and analyzed.

By watching for spikes in usage while keeping track of what appliances are used when these spikes happen, consumers can better understand which appliances use the most power.

In the blog post, Batterberry showed on a graph the dramatic effect that an air conditioner can have on hourly power usage. "Obviously, this won't mean the end of air conditioners, but we do think it will raise people's awareness about how much energy their appliances are using and make smarter decisions accordingly," Batterberry said.

Hohm, a beta service, analyzes home energy usage, based on information provided by the user. The company is also planning to work with utility companies to have energy usage information uploaded directly to Hohm, if requested by the user. The company claims its analysis can help users save money by giving them more insight into how they use energy.

The beta service is free to use, but only available in the U.S., a Microsoft spokeswoman confirmed. The PowerCost Monitor retails for US$268.

Joab Jackson covers enterprise software and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Follow Joab on Twitter at @Joab_Jackson. Joab's e-mail address is Joab_Jackson@idg.com

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Microsoftenergyenvironmentgreen ITgreenindustry verticalsGreen data center

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Joab Jackson

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?