IKEA’s new smart home app feature could help you save big money on your energy bills

IKEA Energy Insights screenshots

(Image credit: IKEA)

IKEA is piloting a new smart home app feature designed to help people keep an eye on their power consumption and save money on their bills. Announced this week, the Energy Insights feature provides real-time data on how much power your devices are using, alongside the price of electricity at the current hour.

As spotted by The Verge, the idea is that you can use it to identify the most power-hungry appliances in your home, then make informed decisions about how much you’re using them, and the best times to use them to keep your energy bills down. 

It’ll also enable to you to compare your energy usage to that of similar households, to give you a better idea of what ‘normal’ energy consumption looks like, so you can adjust your habits if necessary (and feel smug / embarrassed, as appropriate).

IKEA Energy Insights screenshots

(Image credit: IKEA)

Unfortunately (for our non-Swedish readers), the Energy Insights pilot project is only being run in the Swedish IKEA Home smart app for now. However, the flat-pack giant is planning on using its learnings to improve the service and scale it up to include other markets. So if it’s successful, hopefully we’ll see a rollout to other territories relatively soon. 

IKEA Energy Insights screenshots

(Image credit: IKEA)

The announcement also comes with the unveiling of a new smart plug – the Inspelning, which will go on sale globally in October. It connects through the Dirigera hub and as well as having control and automation capabilities, it’ll be able to measure the energy consumption for any device. 

This feature is still pretty rare – on our best smart plugs roundup, it’s only the Eve smart plug that currently has energy-monitoring capabilities, and it’s not included with IKEA’s other smart plugs (the Tradfri and the Tretakt). No pricing information is available just yet, but with any luck it’ll prove to be a budget-friendly solution. 

Smarter energy use

Of the Energy Insights feature, IKEA Sweden Product Owner Mikael Szalay explains: “We want to enable our customers to connect their energy data with their everyday life, so that they can understand and manage their energy usage in smarter ways. It’s about giving everyone the tools to reduce their energy bills and enhancing their ability to adopt smarter energy habits.”

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Improvements are promised throughout the year, including personalized energy-saving tips, and recommendations for the IKEA products and services that’ll help you achieve them. 

Apparently, this service won’t require any smart home products, only an app login from an IKEA Family account. This does make us wonder whether it’s more of a cleverly disguised marketing tool than a useful service, but that remains to be seen. 

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Ruth is TechRadar’s Homes Editor, reviewing and writing about everything from air fryers to vacuum cleaners to coffee machines, as well as the latest smart home gadgets. She’s here to help you find the perfect kit to upgrade your home. Prior to making the shift to Homes, Ruth was TechRadar’s Sleep Editor, testing and reviewing mattresses and other sleep products. She’s also a certified Sleep Science Coach.

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