Microsoft enters home energy management market


Craig Mundie,
Chief Research &
Strategy Officer,
San Francisco, CA, U.S.A. — (METERING.COM) — June 26, 2009 – Microsoft Corp. has entered the home energy management market with a new online application, Microsoft Hohm, which enables consumers to better understand their energy usage and get recommendations to conserve energy.

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. Currently the application is running in beta form.

“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 software and internet-based services can help people track, understand and manage their personal energy usage.”

Energy saving recommendations provided by Microsoft Hohm can range from placing new caulking on windows to removing air leaks to installing a programmable thermostat. The 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, the recommendations will be based on local and national averages. Microsoft Hohm will also leverage energy usage data and feedback from 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 other users to find referrals and exchange ideas.

Microsoft has also partnered with four utilities to deliver Microsoft Hohm. These are Puget Sound Energy, Sacramento Municipal Utility District, Seattle City Light, and Xcel Energy. Customers of these utilities will be able to automatically upload their energy usage data into the application in the near future.

In addition 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.

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.