Having a smart home filled with connected products can be great, but it can feel like it's all for nothing if, as a consumer and presumably someone who cares about how much electricity you use, can't really save on energy. Today in a blog post, Nest has announced a new way they're setting out to help people save on energy costs with their local energy companies. Nest is calling this new initiative "Time of Savings," and it's directed solely at the Time of Use plan that many homes around the country are now set up on.
Time of Use plans are geared towards people who are able to abstain from using energy during peak times of the day, such as on Summer afternoons when things get hot and you might want to kick on the AC and turn down the temperature. In addition to helping you save on energy with a Time of Use plan, Time of Savings is also aimed at making sure there is nothing that you as the consumer has to do according to Nest's post. The Time of Savings feature will be present on the nest learning Thermostat and adjust energy for you according to the shared energy rates that are coming from your energy company.
While this is arguably going to make things plenty simple for those who have Nest thermostats, there are likely to be some who aren't keen on sharing more information with the company, and in this case, monitoring energy use more closely will be required. For those that opt in, if the energy rates in your area are highest around 4PM for example, then the Nest thermostat would know based on the shared rates how to best manage energy use. The idea is that the thermostat may try to accommodate the times of spiked prices and make adjustments to cool or heat things down or up in the home prior to those times, this way if you prefer to turn on the AC at a specific time, the thermostat can try to cool things down before that time if it's able. Nest has integrated a way for users to be aware of when the Time of Savings feature is working, as there will be a green gear displayed on the thermostat screen. Right now, Time of Savings is only available for those who are customers of SolarCity, but Nest does mention that they are working with Southern California Edison and various other energy companies in the region to expand the feature. There was no mention of when or if Nest would bring Time of Savings to other states or countries.