The EMi thermostat is connected to an external modem that accesses the Internet via the regular telephone supply of a home or small business customer. When the utility company wishes to initiate a supply curtailment, it sends a call to the modem using a distinctive ring pattern that will activate the modem. The modem then calls a central utility curtailment dispatch station, from where it downloads the new settings to the thermostat.
In a survey of high-end entertainment households, when asked about the usefulness and interest of PC-based control services, respondents ranked energy management as the most attractive service option with 54% indicating that they had a strong interest in such a service. Utilities are aware and energized by this new demand, and as telemetry services become more widely available, Parks Associates believes consumers will be receptive to such services.
A commercial business owner in Southern CA, utilizing several stores in a strip mall, is currently paying $2,500.00 per month for electricity. He/she is being warned of a 78% increase by 2002, which would put his/her costs at $4,450.00 per month. This considerable increase in overhead will spawn a definite increase in his/her products and services to customers. In order to remain competitive, a business owner will be forced to find solutions to save energy on a long term basis.
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