Microsoft follows Google in pulling plug on its home-energy service

Summary:Not too surprisingly, Microsoft is pulling the plug on its Hohm energy monitoring service.

Not too surprisingly, Microsoft is pulling the plug on its Hohm energy monitoring service.

Microsoft admitted the discontinuation of Hohm via a June 30 blog post on the Microsoft Hohm community blog. MIcrosoft will continue to operate the Hohm service up until May 31, 2012. Like Google, which is cutting the cord on its PowerMeter service, Microsoft is claiming slow uptake is to blame.

From today's post:

"Due to the slow overall market adoption of the service, we are instead focusing our efforts on products and solutions more capable of supporting long-standing growth within this evolving market."

There are a few reasons I'm not surprised about Microsoft's decision to drop Hohm.

Microsoft's Hohm, codenamed "Niagara," never exited beta (from what I could tell). Last I heard about the service (though not directly from Microsoft), Microsoft was repositioning Hohm to be a service to monitor electric-car charging.

Hohm started out with a lot of promise. It was one of Microsoft's first public-facing services hosted on its Windows Azure infrastructure. Microsoft execs described it as an example of the company's ten-year commitment to the energy space.

But just this week, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer admitted what many inside the company have noticed for the past couple of years: Microsoft is going for the big bets and abandoning some of the "idle smaller things" inside the company.

(Thanks to @pradeepviswav for his tweet about Hohm that provided me with a heads-up.)

Topics: Google, Enterprise Software, Microsoft


Mary Jo Foley has covered the tech industry for 30 years for a variety of publications, including ZDNet, eWeek and Baseline. She is the author of Microsoft 2.0: How Microsoft plans to stay relevant in the post-Gates era (John Wiley & Sons, 2008). She also is the cohost of the "Windows Weekly" podcast on the TWiT network. Got a tip? Se... Full Bio

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