Home power over your phone

For anyone who’s wondered what’s actually going into their quarterly power bill, electricity at home just got smarter.

Google’s powermeter promises to show your electricity use from any internet connected device, including your mobile phone. By knowing your power use every day, rather than every three months, the aim is to give you information that helps cut wasted money on power bills.

Trouble was you had to have a smart meter and buy electricity from one of two – Florida and Germany – power companies. And, as Nicholas Stern highlights in his Climate Change review for the UK government: Behaviour is driven by a number of factors, not just financial costs and benefits (see summary). Easy access to information is a step towards such change.

The answer? The Energy Detective a monitor that sends your home’s power use to the web. It’s not quite all there yet however, 240 volt Australian / Europe versions are due early 2010.