Honeywell Wi-Fi Thermostats Bring Utilities and Customers Closer

  • Posted on: 25 October 2013
  • By: Patrick Oliphant

The lowly thermostat has come a long way from being just a little device tucked away somewhere in your home.  They have now become intelligent part of your home energy management solution to the point where you can automate your home atmospheric control. In recent months we have seen a number of thermostats (e.g. Tado and Nest) offering to make it easier to manage the temperature in your home and the energy you use.  The latest of these is the Honeywell Wi-Fi Thermostat.

In 2011, Honeywell announced that they were working with Opower to developer a new range of energy management solutions, one of which was a thermostat that is programmable, ability to connect to the web and the ability to communicate with utilities. Well, earlier this month they launch their Wi-Fi thermostat.

The new Honeywell Wi-Fi thermostats will make it easier for utilities to incentivise their customers for putting less demand on the system, by using less energy. With support for demand response, the thermostats communicate with the utility to let them know that you have reduced your demand for electricity or gas in some cases. Honeywell said setup is easy and the communication between your home and the utility supplier is fully automated.

The ability of the thermostat to support demand response is a welcome solution. For a long time energy providers have had to guest the demand for energy at any particular time and for any geographic area. One example is at Christmas time, the demand for heating goes up and festivity put more demand for energy. Now that a thermostat can communicate back with the energy provider their demand response decisions can be made from more accurate data in near to real time, which help them to better manage the demand for energy.

Available in different sizes, shapes and colours the Wi-Fi thermostat is ready for any home that wants to manage their energy in a different way. There are four models available:
-    Wi-Fi Smart Thermostat
-    Wi-Fi 7-Day Programmable Touchscreen Thermostat
-    Wi-Fi 7-Day Programmable Thermostat
-    Wi-Fi Smart Thermostat with Voice Control

The Honeywell Wi-Fi 7-Day Touchscreen Thermostat  (MSRP: $149) is available and already has the ability to participate in energy-savings events.  According to Honeywell, by early next year all of it’s Wi-Fi thermostats, including the Wi-Fi Smart Thermostat (MSRP: $249), will have the ability to integrate with utility programs.

Homeowners have the ability connect and control the thermostats from anywhere using honeywell’s  Total Connect Comfort app,  available from iTunes and Google Play.  They have recently updated the app so customers who join utility programs can receive alerts on their smartphones or tablets whenever an energy-savings event is scheduled. In addition, the app allows users to opt out of an event if the timing or temperature change isn’t convenient.

Honewell Wi-Fi thermostat customers can get rebates for installing  and connecting to a utility program, along with other rewards, such as bill credits for energy saved. To find if you are eligible and to find out more see the Honeywell website (here).