Smart Appliances for a Smarter City

Appliances with multiple functions have become the norm. Appliances that are energy conscious are becoming the need. Whereas the innovative had once been the ability to program your coffee machine to help you wake up each morning, or VHS/DVD combo, smart appliances stand ready to be absorbed into our day-to-day lives.

A smart appliance is a product that uses electricity, and also has the ability to interpret, and act on signals it receives from a utility such as a wireless device, which then modifies it’s operating behavior or energy consumption (e.g. a water heater that only heats the water based on the pattern by which you typically need it).

Smart appliances are going to play a critical role in moving from the current to a Smart Grid infrastructure. While smart appliances are sold as standalone products, typically on the basis of their low-energy consumption and semi-autonomous capabilities, their are further benefits if the Smart Grid becomes more widely adopted. The growth trend for smart appliances in the global market, however, shows a correlation with the successful development of a larger electric Smart Grid.

Though some consumers buy smart appliances for their addition functions, or to reap the potential economic savings that go with, many are reluctant to alter their behavior without proper incentives from utilities companies and appliance manufacturers.

By connecting smart appliances to a Home Energy Management System- which maximises the use of home electricity- while not being a requirement in order to use smart appliance owners, carry with them the potential for a 15% reduction to annual electric bills.