Apple May Help Slice Home Energy Use With Smart Grid Project

photo of home energy use power cordsCredit: futureshape via Flickr.

iSave? Apple is going after the low-hanging fruit, and mulling a move into the energy management market. The company is developing a system to help you regulate and decrease the amount of power you use in your home. As a bonus, the system would boost the wireless signal in your abode. Close to 25 percent of all the energy used in the United States is used by residential properties, so this could have a big impact. Not to mention all the people who have smart phones, laptops and other wireless devices (and are sick of dead spots).There won't necessarily be "an app for that," as they say in Apple iPhone land. But the "Smart Home Energy Management Dashboard System," could turn "every power outlet in your home or office into a conduit for audio, video and data," with something called HomePlug Powerline Networking, according to Patently Apple.

The Apple Smart Home system also would control the amount of power that flows to a device, so you could turn down your electronics, or turn them off altogether when not in use.

That would allow you to stick it to all those energy vampires in your home, that suck juice even when they're not being used. The long-rumored Apple Tablet could be the control device.

The Apple project follows similar announcements by Google and Microsoft. When businesses compete to cut energy use, we'll all win, right? Or all lose (some of those high energy bills). Let's hope that the iSave, or whatever they call it, will do more than just negate the energy use from all those gadgets that Apple, Google and Microsoft are trying to sell us. Energy efficiency has the potential to offset growth in energy use, replace the need for dirty generation and hold down prices. Yes, yes and yes.


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Tags: Electricity | Energy


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