Posted by British Gas in Smarter Living
2012 is set to be a very exciting year for British Gas customers. With a wealth of new technology already hitting homes or ready to roll-out, all designed with improved customer comfort and control in mind, this is the year that you, the energy user, take control. Yesterday we welcomed three of the UK’s best-loved Mummy bloggers (and members of the Britmums blog community) to our Staines HQ to get hands-on with the technology that we think is set to define the future home and the future of British Gas.
Yesterday’s visit was a chance for a few of the Britmums champions who took part in that project to get hands on with the smart meter technology, and the world of other exciting innovations coming alongside it. If you couldn’t tune in to our live tweeting session from Staines yesterday, you can read what we got up to below, and follow the Britmums bloggers here: @Britmums, @babesabouttown @karencannard @amodernmother.
With smart meters at the heart of British Gas’ vision for the home of the future, we took our bloggers to the British Gas smart homes lab, where we test out smart meters in a controlled environment, to work out their effect on energy behaviour, consumption and the resulting bills. For those that don’t know, smart meters enable you to view your energy consumption in pounds and pence, setting consumption targets and viewing your usage in real terms.
We’re rolling out smart meters to all our customers because we feel they could transform the way we use energy. The bloggers thought the same; they were impressed by the increased control the meters gave as well as by the way the smart approach to energy had helped them start discussing energy issues with their children.
Key to our vision of the smart home is the wireless remote control at the heart of both our home security package, Safe & Secure, and soon-to-be-launched Remote Heating Control. Combined with the smart meter, these technologies are set to revolutionise the way we all use energy, and the Britmums team were surprised to find British Gas taking the lead in the market.
Both these packages use wireless technology to enable you to control systems in your house (both your central heating and security devices) remotely via the internet, a smartphone app or even SMS. Put simply, you’ll never have to come home to a cold house or worry about your home's security again – a luxury that the bloggers could all relate to and were excited about. Remote Heating Control will launch later this year, but you can find out about Safe & Secure here: http://www.britishgas.co.uk/products-and-services/safe-and-secure.html.
Finally, our Electric Vehicle team rounded off the day by explaining how British Gas is investing in renewable transport technology. You, like the bloggers, might be surprised to hear that British Gas is getting involved in the electric vehicle industry. As the UK’s biggest electricity supplier, with 11,000 engineers on the ground across the country and a huge vehicle fleet of our own, the future of electric transport is a major concern for us.
We let the bloggers get to grips with the charging points that EV owners can have installed in their home in conjunction with cheaper tariffs, and explained how we’re testing electric vehicles in our own fleet – the bloggers even got driven back to the station at the end of the day in one of our British Gas-branded Nissan Leafs. If you want to find out more about how British Gas is getting involved in electric vehicles, please click here: http://www.britishgas.co.uk/products-and-services/energy-saving/electric-vehicles.html.
For more detailed information on all the areas of the smart home that we covered with the Britmums bloggers you can head to the Smarter Living section of the British Gas website: http://www.britishgas.co.uk/smarter-living.html.