Should your ISP be the glue that connects your smart home?

Smart homes don’t have to require a lot of consumer effort, if the consumer is willing to fork over a service fee to their ISP. In this week’s podcast we chat with a Comcast executive about how it views the internet of things.

AlertMe’s ‘huge’ UK gas deal: big data for real people

Smart energy startup AlertMe — which provides a cloud-based way to monitor your energy consumption — has struck a deal with British Gas, the U.K.’s largest domestic energy supplier. It’s the latest big break for the business, CEO Mary Turner explains.

Philips and Berkeley Lab Take on Smart Energy at Home

While electronics maker Philips (s PHG) is working on getting its LEDs into homes, the company is also starting to focus on the bigger picture of energy-efficient homes. The Amsterdam-based company announced a new partnership this week with the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory to jointly research energy-efficiency solutions for buildings. Improving lighting efficiency using integrated smart wireless devices will be the partnership’s first objective, and consumers could see a commercial product as soon as next year, Philips says.

This is a great partnership that could help deliver the next generation smart home. Philips is one of the world’s largest producers of lighting and has been pushing hard to bring LEDs to the mass market. Meanwhile, Berkeley National Lab has been researching smart energy for homes and buildings at its Environmental Energy Technologies Division.

Nothing they are proposing is that groundbreaking — there have been motion sensors to control lights for years — but this news shows that device makers like Philips are starting to “get it.” Philips is starting with lighting and building systems, but hopefully it won’t take long for them to smarten up their whole line of electronics, everything from the giant flat-screen TVs down to the Sonicare toothbrushes.

This could prove to be both competition and a strong new partner for the startups developing energy efficiency devices for the home. The Dutch electronics giant has been buying up LED companies — perhaps smart energy startups are next.

If you found this post interesting you might also be interested in Earth2Tech’s first Briefing, The Smart Energy Home.