Microsoft Hohm Helps Consumers Save Money and Energy
New online application enables consumers to better understand home energy usage.
SAN FRANCISCO — Microsoft Corp. today announced Microsoft Hohm, a new online application that enables consumers to better understand their energy usage, get recommendations and start saving money. Microsoft Hohm uses advanced analytics licensed from the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the U.S. Department of Energy to provide consumers with personalized energy-saving recommendations. Microsoft Hohm is an easy-to-use tool that helps consumers lower their energy bill and reduce their impact on the environment. The beta application is available at no cost to anyone in the United States with an Internet connection and can be accessed directly by visiting http://www.microsoft-hohm.com.
“We believe technology will play a pivotal role in tackling the global energy issues we currently face,” said Craig Mundie, chief research and strategy officer at Microsoft.” Microsoft Hohm demonstrates how a combination of advanced sotware and Internet-based services can help people track, understand and manage their personal energy usage.”
Consumers today are motivated to save energy to reduce their spending and do their part in conserving the environment. According to a May 2009 utility consumer survey from Gartner Inc. (conducted with households in the U.S. and U.K.), 80 percent of consumers in the U.S. would participate in an energy program if it were offered by providers. Data also showed that cost reduction is the key driving force behind participating in an energy efficiency program.*
Microsoft Hohm provides savings recommendations, which can range from placing new caulking on windows to removing air leaks to installing a programmable thermostat. These recommendations are tailored based on specific circumstances in the consumer’s home including house features, usage patterns and appliances. The savings will vary based on the information shared and the characteristics of consumers’ households. If consumers don’t provide their data, Microsoft Hohm will base its recommendations on local and national averages. Microsoft Hohm will leverage the energy usage data and feedback from its users to refine and improve the accuracy and relevancy of recommendations. In addition, consumers will be able to compare their energy usage with that of others in their area and connect with the Microsoft Hohm community to find referrals and exchange ideas.
Microsoft Hohm is built on the Windows Azure cloud operating system and leverages Bing search as well as the Microsoft Advertising platform, and is accessible from any computer using a modern browser.
Microsoft Hohm — Enabling Utilities to Provide Enhanced Customer Experiences and Helping Utilities Meet Regulatory Requirements
Today’s advanced utilities are leading the charge to be environmentally responsible and sound energy providers. Microsoft Hohm helps utilities by equipping them with a cost-effective and scalable tool that allows them to supply their customers with comprehensive information regarding their energy consumption. For instance, consumers who are customers of a Microsoft Hohm utility partner company can opt to automatically upload their energy usage data into the application in the near future.
Microsoft is proud to team with four industry-leading partners including the following:
Together with these partners, Microsoft Hohm can help consumers reduce energy consumption and take advantage of the rebate and conservation programs utilities offer. A lightweight standards-based software development kit (SDK) is available for utilities interested in partnering with Microsoft Hohm.
Microsoft is also partnering with Itron Inc. and Landis+Gyr to make it easier for utilities and consumers to automatically access granular energy consumption data. Integration with meter data will make it even easier for utilities to take full advantage of Microsoft Hohm offerings.
Using Microsoft Hohm can help utilities meet the increasing regulatory requirements for energy conservation by promoting utility conservation programs with customers. Utilities can also leverage Microsoft Hohm to encourage customers to reduce or spread their energy consumption during peak periods. Microsoft Hohm helps utilities demonstrate their environmental responsibility.
Home page: http://microsoft-hohm.com
Give Us Feedback: http://feedback.microsoft-hohm.com
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/microsofthohm (@microsofthohm)
Microsoft Hohm Launch Partners
Puget Sound Energy:
“We’re excited to team with Microsoft in adding Microsoft Hohm to our tool kit of energy efficiency services to help our customers save money, energy and the environment,” said Steve Reynolds, CEO and president of Puget Sound Energy.” Puget Sound Energy shares the belief with Microsoft that better information leads to better choices in energy use. Microsoft Hohm will help our customers be more energy efficient by providing new insights and understanding into how they use energy and how they can conserve.”
Sacramento Municipal Utility District:
“Microsoft Hohm represents a simple, no-cost opportunity for consumers to learn more about and track their energy usage,” said Elisabeth Brinton, director of community relations at SMUD.” As an online information tool, Microsoft Hohm complements SMUD’s award-winning, locally delivered energy efficiency customer service programs. Whenever a conversation can be started around energy efficiency, it’s ultimately beneficial to everyone.”
Seattle City Light:
“As a publicly owned utility, we produce low-cost, environmentally responsible power,” said Jorge Carrasco, superintendent of Seattle City Light.” Microsoft Hohm will give our customers information that lets them make smart decisions about their energy use while potentially saving money.”
“We pride ourselves on being responsible providers of energy,” said Dick Kelly, chairman, president and CEO of Xcel Energy.” A big part of that is our belief that we need to constantly seek new ways to improve our environmental performance. By adopting Microsoft Hohm, we can provide our customers vital energy consumption data that not only positively affects individual behavior, but that collectively benefits the environment as a whole.”
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT “) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.
* Zarko Sumic,“Utility Consumer Survey: Energy Efficiency, Do They Care and Why? “, Gartner Industry Research 6 May 2009: ID # G00167617
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Julie Jacobson is founding editor of CE Pro, the leading media brand for the home-technology channel. She has covered the smart-home industry since 1994, long before there was much of an Internet, let alone an Internet of things. Currently she studies, speaks, writes and rabble-rouses in the areas of home automation, security, networked A/V, wellness-related technology, biophilic design, and the business of home technology. Julie majored in Economics at the University of Michigan, spent a year abroad at Cambridge University, and earned an MBA from the University of Texas at Austin. She is a recipient of the annual CTA TechHome Leadership Award, and a CEDIA Fellows honoree. A washed-up Ultimate Frisbee player, Julie currently resides in San Antonio, Texas and sometimes St. Paul, Minn. Follow on Twitter: @juliejacobson Email Julie at firstname.lastname@example.org
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