I hate my thermostat. Oh, it’s a modern, programmable variety. Yes, it has the ability to keep the indoor climate at different temperatures depending on the time of day, or whether we’re on vacation or not. It also has about a million buttons and modes that I don’t understand. So most of the time, I’m just manually cranking it up or down, depending on our need.
I’d love to have more control over not only the heat and air conditioning, but total energy consumption in my home. On days that we’re out until 4 pm, why should a single appliance be consuming any energy at all? Wattio is a combination hardware suite and online software program that promises to deliver exactly that (and with fewer buttons, too).
‘The cleanest energy is that energy which is not used at all,’ claims Wattio CEO Patxi Etxebeste. The Wattio system consists of four wireless gadgets that work independently, but better in concert, to give you complete control over when and how your home consumes power.
The Gate is a smart gateway plus in-home display that acts as the heart of the entire system. It can be accessed locally (from its color LCD touchscreen) and remotely through web browser and apps for smartphones and tablets.
The Thermic is battery-powered thermostat that can be placed anywhere in the home. It’s large display and lack of confusing buttons makes it easy to understand, and like all of the Wattio gadgets, it can be controlled remotely.
The Bat is an energy monitor that fits inside your electrical box, triggering events and comparing your metrics with similar homes. It works for up to 3 circuits.
The Pod (perhaps the coolest of the gadget bundle) is a smart plug and range extender. Just plug it to the socket and you’ll have absolute control of any device plugged to it: turn on/off, avoid stand-by, program working hours, make consumption predictions, and respond to triggers. Note: The pod is only currently available for European outlets. A UK and US version are in the works.
Used together to track and control energy use, the Wattio system claims to completely eliminate standby power usage, which represents near 10 percent of a home’s electricity consumption. You can also set calendars for your gadgets in advance, program events to trigger actions and alerts in your Wattio Gadgets (like, the TV turned on at 5 while everyone’s supposed to be doing homework), and simulate presence at home when you are out or on vacation.
The Wattio blasted through its $90,000 goal on Indiegogo, so contributors will be the first to try it out. Check out their website to be kept in the loop when it makes its way Stateside.