Smart fridges, washing machines, and more can connect to the smart grid to adjust energy use based on demand and save you cash. | Image: HCA
The question “Why does my fridge / washing machine / dryer need an internet connection?” is a good one: a phone notification that your wash is done is far from life-changing. But if adding smarts to your white goods could save you some cash, it might be another story.
With a connection to the internet, appliances can automatically shift and reduce their energy use through demand response programs to save you money. But today, this can be fiddly and confusing to set up; it’s also not widely available.
This is a problem the Home Connectivity Alliance (HCA) is trying to solve with a new Energy Management Interface specification it launched at CES this week — and it could be a big step toward expanding demand response adoption.