Smart Technology

The smart in smart technology stands for Self-Monitoring Analysis and Reporting Technology, which means that a smart device may have two-way communication over the internet, from the device to the data collection system it is connected to.

Not only does smart technology make products easier to control, it can also make them more energy-efficient.

Smart meters

Smart meters track and report the electricity consumption of its location in 15-minute increments to the utility (some can send information more frequently).

Using smart meters, homeowners and businesses can view their energy consumption and make decisions about how to save electricity and save money.

Smart appliances

Gartner reports that 6.4 billion connected smart devices will be in use in 2016, up 30% from the year before. If an appliance is a smart device, it can be controlled remotely over the internet. For example, with a smart thermostat managing your home’s heating and air conditioning, you could change the temperature remotely if your schedule changes that day.

When smart appliances are able to access the smart power grid, it will be possible to optimize energy use at the best time of the day. For example, electricity might be supplied to the toaster in the mornings only and the dishwasher in the evenings.

Smart buildings

While large buildings and campuses have use integrated systems to control HVAC, lighting, and access for decades, they are now being used by smaller buildings for better control and energy efficiency.

Smart grid

The smart grid is the network of smart meters, plus technology within the electricity grid and its components with two-way communications and two-way power flow to:

  • Quickly detect outages to minimize the impact on the rest of system
  • Allow power to be distributed more efficiently and reliably
  • Integrate highly variable renewable energy sources, like wind and solar
  • Manage electricity generation flow from centralized power generating stations out to consumers or from consumers and businesses back into the grid
  • Facilitate the integration of electric vehicles

What people are worried about

With the rapid development of integrated digital smart technology, people are concerned about:

  • Security and vulnerability of a connected system
  • Invasions of privacy with the sharing of personal information
  • Costs to implement