Which is the sole motivation for Emberpulse’s existence – to provide tools to help the consumer win.
GadgetGuy has checked out Emberpulse (details here), and we can report (in a technical sense)
Part 1 – data gathering
- A licensed electrician installs Embermeter – a small power monitor in your power meter box. This monitors real-time power usage
- It relays this via Zig-bee (like Wi-Fi but designed to go through walls and metal power boxes) to Emberpulse – a Zig-Bee receiver and Wi-Fi connected IoT device.
- Emberpulse uses visual warnings about power use and power expense.
- It transmits that use to the Embercloud (AWS hosted in Sydney) that records usage.
This can be for energy use from the power grid, solar, battery or other sources.
Part Two – analytics on your data
Emberpulse regularly collects (via screen scraping or data exchange) publicly available data from retailers 5000+ plans. Your location may have access to hundreds of these.
It then analyses your data use (using over 259,000 quarterly energy readings) to identify the best electricity plan for your home and matches it with the best plans. You are notified of the best plans and can switch at will. Or after it has earnt your trust, it can switch plans automatically for you.
Gelonese categorically states that
- It is 100% independent
- It receives no commissions or revenue from energy retailers
- It does not sell your data
- It is a free service – it reserves the future right to charge a small fee for switching
- And importantly it guarantees its savings
“We guarantee to find you at least $500 in energy savings over three years. Savings may include identifying a better energy plan, recommending a solar system or home battery, or automating your energy usage. If Emberpulse doesn’t, we’ll pay you the difference between your identified savings and the $500 guarantee.”
Gelonese says savings are more like $400-500 a year.
The cost of an electrician installing the Embermeter and Emberpulse is around $500 (varies depending on single phase or three phase) – that is it.
And yes, there is more
Gelonese is chuffed that the app can detect if your solar system is working efficiently, or when it is time to update to a battery (and what size), or if it’s a waste of time and money.
He is also a smarthome advocate and sees huge potential to update users homes to smart energy switching for air conditioners, lighting and appliances. No, Emberpulse does not sell them.
GadgetGuy’s take – take back control over power bills
As a techie, I can tell you that a little knowledge is a beautiful thing. Knowledge of your energy usage takes back control from retailers and gives you the ability to control what you spend by selecting lower cost times to do the washing or use a dryer. it also means you avoid rip-off
I like that it starts you thinking about the eventual need to go solar and be self-sufficient as the use of fossil fuel declines.
And as one whose power bills have skyrocketed over the last two years from $500 to $1000+ a quarter without an appreciable change in use, I will be trying this soon – very soon.