The PEAKapp project has been running for 18 months now. The project includes the field test of the energy management and customer engagement software that has been developed for the project by smart metering specialist GreenPocket. By now, the test phase for the software is already in progress for 8 months to examine whether and how consumer behavior in private households can be positively influenced. At this stage, it is time to take stock – with promising results!
What is being tested?
The aim of the PEAKapp project is to promote a consumption pattern that can ideally contribute to smoothing out peak loads. For this purpose, a field study with more than 1,500 participants is carried out over the duration of 12 months to test the influence of specific software features on the user behavior.
Four features are especially tested in the study:
- The gamification application is designed to promote the users’ interest and understanding of their own energy consumption by engaging them with gaming elements. The better knowledge of their consumption provides the users with the fundamentals for optimizing efficiency.
- The campaigning tool enables the energy supplier to offer his customers price incentives through flexible discounts in order to motivate users to switch on devices with high consumption when the availability of renewable energy is high.
- The benchmarking tool allows a comparison of the users’ own consumption with that of similarly equipped households. This creates a competitive atmosphere between users, which aims to motivate them to optimize their consumption behavior.
- In the next step, the results of the energy game and the household comparisons can be shared via social networks. The goal is to prompt discussions on current trends in the energy sector and on potential saving opportunities.
A first evaluation
The field study ends in the summer of 2018, but the preliminary results already establish a basis for a first analysis.
“The price incentives and the gamification feature encourage the users to use the application more frequently,” summarizes Dr. Thomas Goette, CEO of GreenPocket. “Approximately half of the participating households use the PEAKapp software actively. More than 60 percent of these customers use the gamification app, about one third of them on a regular basis. And even 70 percent of the active users have utilized the comparison function, and, as well, a third of them on a regular basis.”
“The number of the software’s regular users actually exceeds our expectations,” adds project head Dr. Johannes Reichl. “It remains to be seen whether the use of the software will effectively lead to a load shift. The corresponding evaluations are carried out while the field test is still running. The final results will be available in a few months.”
Dr. Wolf Stertkamp, GreenPocket GmbH, Wolf.Stertkamp@greenpocket.de, www.greenpocket.de