Preferred attributes of home energy management products for smart grids - results of a design study and related user survey
by Uchechi Obinna; Peter Joore; Linda Wauben; Angèle Reinders
J. of Design Research (JDR), Vol. 16, No. 2, 2018

Abstract: This paper presents an insight into end-users' perception of smart grid products for households. The analysed products included three types of home energy management products (HEMPs) namely: smart thermostats, smart plugs and smart wall sockets. The analysis involved existing commercial HEMPs, as well as newly designed HEMPs from a students' project executed at University of Twente (Netherlands) in 2013 and 2014. Various industrial design methods were applied, and an online survey was utilised for data collection. The smart thermostat was considered the product with the greatest potential to stimulate energy-efficient behaviour. Features most preferred by end-users are: 1) visual display of energy information; 2) monitoring of energy use of appliances; 3) remote control, and expected ease of use. Appearance also appeared to have influenced the preferences of end-users regarding specific HEMPs. This study highlights the main features that household end-users desire in products that could stimulate energy-efficient behaviour.

Online publication date:: Fri, 29-Jun-2018

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