Internet Hookup Would Make Appliances More Efficient

Linked fridge, for instance, could adjust usage automatically
By Ambreen Ali,  Newser User
Posted Sep 25, 2008 9:09 AM CDT
Energy dashboards control how appliances consume electricity.   (Getty Images)
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(Newser) – Electric bill breaking the bank these days? Your fridge might be able to help, when developers start bringing Internet-ready appliances to market, GigaOm reports. Proactive dashboards could control energy usage to save money and conserve by telling wired appliances to reduce power during certain time periods without human input, and download new settings to lessen consumption.

The leap to linking refrigerators and washing machines isn't far-fetched for homes that are already wired for entertainment systems, but IP-enabled appliances remain "in deep, dark corporate labs" for now, an energy expert says. The government must first regulate how the appliances will communicate, and utility companies need to provide the smart meters required to run energy dashboards.