The Future of Energy Efficiency in the Home

Energy | August 18th, 2015

Taylor recently joined Zuli partner SPD Smartglass and their CEO, Joseph Harary, at the USA Pavilion at Expo Milano 2015. Both participated in the Terrace Talk: “Sustainable Green Building Design using SPD SmartGlass and Intelligent Adaptive Control Systems.”


SPD SmartGlass has the largest smart glass roof in the world on display at the USA Pavilion under which the talk was held. Taylor’s portion of the discussion focused on the future of energy efficient smart home designs.


We wanted to share with you our take on the future of energy efficiency in the home.


When it comes to improving energy efficiency, not only does the technology actually have to improve your energy consumption, it is also important that the technology is simple, consumer friendly and easily able to adapt into our lifestyle without adding extra complexity or high cost.


You must consider the consumer and their willingness to add these systems and products to their home. It comes down to four areas of focus:

Ease of use
Intelligence and adaptability
Device compatibility



85% of houses and buildings are old. Requiring every person interested in having a smart home and/or energy efficient devices to remodel or fully install an expensive system in their home or apartment, is not practical. These systems must be able to be “plug and play.” It’s essential that you do not increase the barrier for the consumer to buy and install.


Ease of Use


Solutions cannot be created for the “early adapters.” Instead these solutions have to appeal to the mass consumer market, which means they should not require programming. Usability should be simple and straight forward and a professional should not have to install them.


Intelligence and Adaptability


Just as the solutions need to be easy to install, they also need to easily fit into a consumer’s life. Anytime you’re making a simple task harder than before, you’re losing the value of the technology. For example, walking into a room and having to pull out your phone, open up an app and manually turn on alight is actually harder than flicking a light switch.  If these are the “solutions” on the market, over time it will force users to go back to the easier option, flicking the switch.


Device Compatibility


Smart home devices have to be able to work together if they are going to provide real value, more than just using your phone as a remote control. For example, by knowing that a room has ambient light, lighting can automatically be adjusted without the consumer even having to think about it. Those are the use case scenarios that truly make your home smarter.


You can see that simplicity is the key factor here. At Zuli, our philosophy is to add more intelligence into the home, so instead of having to manage and control our home manually, our home will automatically adjust the environment around us to improve our comfort, convenience, and, of course, energy efficiency.


By taking the control out of your responsibility with Zuli Presence, we can help save energy in the background without interrupting your lifestyle. Additionally, the Zuli app gives insight into your monthly energy bill and lets you know how much appliances are contributing to your overall cost.


Looking further into Zuli’s future, the Smartplug is an enabler of our technology and our next mission is to enable our intelligence on top of the other connected devices in homes.


Specifically with the SPD-SmartGlass and Zuli integration, adjusting the darkness through systems passively can improve the savings. If someone’s in the room, we can adjust devices to their preferences and when they leave can instantly adjust to power efficient mode.  Furthermore, windows can adjust to let more light in while connected to the lights to dim lower and save and power adjust to let less light/heat in on a hot day to decrease the heating/cooling.


To learn more about Zuli’s energy efficiency features, visit our site.



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