Tuesday, 25 November 2014

Smart Tech

The digital technology boom is being fuelled by lots of NEW stuff. An industry estimate is that over 10% of UK homes will own at least one smart system by the end of the year. Amazingly that’s over 3 million UK households will be going ‘smart’

These technologies can help not only measure their energy consumption but also how they can control consumption. Recently we have been talking about the Dimplex Quantum heaters and I have just fitted a Nest Stat in my home. Why? Because heating makes up over 60 per cent of my household’s energy bill.

Energy prices have continued to soar in our uncompetitive market so I’m investing now to help my
back pocket for the future. Hence the opportunity to invest in new products and solutions to help reduce the energy bill is becoming increasingly appealing to all of us.

To be honest little had changed in the way we controlled our heating systems since forever so the arrival of smart technology was well overdue.

Our new Nest stat tells me how much energy has being used and can be controlled via both my phone and tablet. I can check the status of the heating system and turn it on if I’m going to be home earlier (which never happens) or off if I’m not there.

Its easy to see when its calling for heat

The clever (and slightly spooky) this is this new stat learns about our family life. It even knows when I am at home. It learns from our heating preferences, how long it takes a home to heat up, and even when it’s empty to create a personalised and optimised heating schedule. It quite literally ground breaking technology that is not just about the thermostat but about its ability to learn, and being able to create a ‘conscious’ home.

It learns when my family needs more heat or wants less, it can even predict how weather conditions will alter the household’s behaviour and adjust accordingly, and will turn the system off when it senses no-one is home.

If you look at the above you can see when the heating is on, when the family were out and it even says when we have turned the stat up or the stat decides it need to come on earlier because 'its cold outside'

I didn’t get the nest protect as I have the Aico Multi-Sensor Fire Alarm but if I hadn’t done that two years ago, it would have been an option I considered as the within this ‘conscious’ home, different devices can talk to each other and create a safe environment as the Nest Protect, communicates with the learning thermostat, so in the event of a carbon monoxide alarm the heating system, is turned off and sends information to the user’s mobile phone alerting them when an alarm goes off.

According to Gartner, there will be 26 billion devices on the ‘Internet of Things’ by 2020.

The UK government, along with others around the world, has committed to reduce carbon emissions by 80 per cent by 2050. This means a cut to energy waste with the government setting a target for all UK homes to have a smart meter by 2020. Again, smart technology has a role to play in this, providing an effective means to control usage and, in turn, maximise energy savings.

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