Control energy consumption with ZigBee Plugwise Smart Sockets

ZigBee Plugwise Smart Sockets

Plugwise announced its new ZigBee Smart Sockets which together with PlugWise Stick USB mesh network transmitter / receiver and PlugWise software can give you a full control under energy consumption in your home. Except that you’ll able to manage sockets remotely. Thanks to wireless technology ZigBee.

Each Smart Socket is £35 and USB transmitter/receiver is £40.

[via AutomatedHome]

Monitor your home with BT Home Monitor


Company Intamac has launched its broadband home monitoring products and services with WoonVeilig in The Netherlands. The BT Home Monitor VP1000 is easy to install DIY wireless security alarm and monitoring system. First of all it’s a security system. So, VP1000 includes a security panel and various wireless sensors: motion, smoke and flood detectors. The security panel offers a few pre-defined mode for the home security and possibility to connect to the broadband Internet to have access from everywhere. Additionally wireless D-Link IP cameras can be connected to the system to allow monitor you home.

The price of BT Home Monitor VP1000 including Main Control Panel, 2 Wireless Movement Detectors, Wireless Door Contact and Remote Keyfob is £115.99. Additionally consumer should pay £5 per month for the access to his online account and includes the cost of all outbound voice call, sms text message and e-mail notifications from our monitoring service. Additionally £2.5 should be paid for monitoring 4 IP cameras.

The new Intamac security system looks very similar to AlertMe but offers more useful features then it. However, AlertMe is based on standard home automation protocol ZigBee which is much better that using some proprietary unique one (I couldn’t find any information aboutVP1000 protocol). In any case, those two systems show a new tendency in the DIY home security and monitoring systems.

[via HomeToys News]

Seven ways to measure energy consumption

Smarthome should not only help to automate some routine operations but it has to save energy as well. Here is a list of seven devices which offer you possibility to measure en energy consumption.

  • Kill-a-Watt. I already wrote about that useful gadget. It should be plugged into an outlet and then an appliance should be plugged into the Kill-a-Watt. This way you’ll able to see the real-time energy consumption of that appliance.
  • Elecrtisave is a portable a whole-house monitor. It contains a two parts: measurement module which transmits data to the display by radio frequency. The price of the Elecrtisave is about £50.00.
  • TED (The Energy Detective) is also a portable system for whole-home energy monitoring system. Its features and price are similar to Elecrtisave – $140 USD.
  • Wattson is a whole-home energy monitoring system. It’s stylish and allows to record measurement history. Just connect the display unit to the PC via USB port and use Wittson software. The price of the Wattson is £125.00 including software.
  • PowerCost Monitor is also a whole-home energy monitoring system. It also includes two parts: a sensor and a display. The PowerCost Monitor doesn’t give a possibility to connect to the PC. Instead of than it shows pick consumption for the last 24 hours, emulator of outside meter disk, current and total spent amount and outside temperature. The price of the PowerCost Monitor is $135.00 USD.
  • EML 2020 is another a whole-home and individual appliance energy monitoring. Included software and USB cable for computer tracking of data it allows to measure the power consumption of individual 110/120V plug-in appliances or the total energy consumption of your home. For advanced features you should pay $629.00.
  • Home Joule is an energy monitor of new generation. It not only shows an energy consumption but it also calculate its cost according to current energy price. That price is received from the regional market where you live or (if available) from advanced metering in your space. The Home Joule is not released yet. So, there is no any words about its price and availability.

Energy Monitoring with Kill-a-Watt


A modern house is full of electronic devices which make our life easily and more joyous. But in other hand all of those devices take the energy and as result you’re starting to think how to reduce your electrical bill. To do that you should know how much energy takes each device in your home. The easiest way to get that information is some energy monitor device like Kill a WATT, which allows to measure energy consumption on a device-by-device or appliance-by-appliance basis. Just plug it into an outlet and then plug an appliance into the Kill-a-Watt. It counts consumption by the Kilowatt-hour just like utility companies and display those information on LCD display. You may figure out your electrical expenses by the hour, day, week, month, even an entire year. Based on Kill-a-Watt measurements you can decide to replace some old appliance by new one with an Energy-Star rated model. Better yet, you may plug-in Kill-a-Watt to your PC or media center and see how much energy is being consumed by the system even when it is turned off and use something like Bye Bye Standby to completely switch it off.

The Wireless Pool Chemical Monitoring System

Wireless Pool Monitoring System

If you have a pool you should know how difficult to keep it clean. iRobot Verro can care about cleaning but Wireless Pool Monitoring System may help you to catch the time when the pool robot should do its work. The system contains two parts: floating pod and wireless display. The floating pod includes sensors for water temperature, pH, and chlorine level. It takes measurements at the same 18″ depth recommended by the Association of Pool and Spa Professionals. The sensor pod and display can communicate up to 45 meters away from each other, so you don’t have to step outside each time you want to check on your pool.

To be sure that your pool is clean just spend $399.95.

[via Ubergizmo]

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