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Like other large software and hardware providers, Microsoft has a business unit focused on selling to utilities, many of which are investing to make energy delivery more efficient.
Part of that effort includes Hohm, a web application for consumers to track energy use and get recommendations on how to improve efficiency at home.
Microsoft has signed a few deals with utilities to feed energy usage directly into Hohm, but it's also trying to connect to home energy monitors that don't require a smart meter. Earlier this year, it announced a deal with the maker of the PowerCost Monitor, which is now making a wi-fi gateway to transmit electric meter data to Hohm via a home broadband connection. People can view real-time electricity usage and get historical data to better understand how much different energy appliances use.
Photo credit: Martin LaMonica/CNET