Sometimes innovative companies can be a little too ahead of their time. Google and Microsoft are arguably two of the most influential and innovative companies in modern history. Part of their success has been to capitalize on emerging trends by anticipating consumer needs and wants. So it was not terribly surprising when both companies introduced technology tied to the smart grid.
Lowe’s is now selling the PowerCost Monitor and its WiFi Gateway plug and play accessory, which enables real-time energy feeds to Microsoft Hohm and Google PowerMeter. The PowerCost Monitor is available in Lowe’s stores located in 24 states, including California, Washington, Florida, Massachusetts, Maryland, and New York.
Blue Line has introduced the PowerCost Monitor WiFi Gateway that wirelessly uploads real-time energy use data to Microsoft’s online application Hohm. Blue Line says consumers will get more detailed usage information than what is currently contained in utility bills. Hohm enables consumers to analyze their energy usage and compare it to how much others use power. The software also suggests ways to conserve power. Research indicates the PowerCost Monitor can help families reduce consumption by up to 18 percent.