In December 2021, UK natural gas prices reached an all-time high, approximately nine times higher than they were during the previous year.
Driven by supply chain vulnerabilities in Russian gas exports to Western Europe, energy industry experts warn that the recent price hike could be the start of many, with further increases anticipated if a cold snap triggers a sharp rise in demand for gas heating, or supplies are disrupted. Meanwhile, concern is mounting in many British households over spiraling energy costs.
Fortunately, numerous apps have been developed to help people in the UK simultaneously reduce their carbon footprint and monthly bills. We look at seven of the most popular apps on the market today.
Smart home technology makes our lives easier, and our homes more intelligent. Today, it is possible to control a variety of different items via our mobile phones, from your doorbell to your coffee machine.
Thanks to Hive, it is now possible for people in the UK to use their smartphone to save on their monthly bills, too. One of the biggest names in smart thermostats today, Hive can save customers significantly each year. With user-friendly features, Hive is one of the most popular smart home technology systems on the market today.
The platform may not come cheap, but the price does include hardware. Hive incorporates some clever money-saving features, including holiday mode to prevent users from wasting money while they are away from home, and frost protection, to prevent their pipes from freezing during a cold spell. It is even possible to connect Hive to Amazon Alexa, operating your home heating system by voice.
2. Energy Consumption Analyzer
This handy app provides accurate readings, enabling users to track just how much energy they use each day.
After downloading the app, new members simply input data from their energy meters. Energy Consumption Analyzer then starts providing data on electricity, gas, and water usage. Users can then add comments and color code information to help them track their energy and water consumption.
The app does require a significant amount of information to be inputted manually, but it is free to download on Android.
WhatGas enables iOS and Android device users to find the cost of diesel and gasoline at every gas station in the UK. By downloading this free app, users can also avoid driving around searching for gas when they need to fill up in an unfamiliar area, securing the best possible prices when fueling their vehicle.
This app brings makes sustainability rewarding and fun, helping users to develop sustainable habits to carry on through everyday life, encouraging them to replace actions that consume energy with green alternatives.
This innovative approach rewards members with features similar to a game, awarding efforts with trophies. Joulebug enables users to share their accomplishments with friends, encouraging them to compete against each other in challenges.
Created by Nest Labs, a Google-owned company, Nest home automation devices include one of the most sophisticated smart thermostats on the market today.
Nest enables users to monitor and adjust the temperature in every room in their house. It can also detect light, motion, and humidity, recognizing whether or not you are still in the room. It then uses these sensors to learn its users’ schedules, negating the need for manual input, instinctively adapting to users’ habits.
Nest also incorporates a holiday mode, giving users the power to schedule their heating, turning it on before they arrive so they come back to a warm home.
Nest alerts members to money-saving opportunities. Compatible with Amazon’s Alexa and Google Home, Nest does require users to purchase multiple sensors to heat their whole property, which can become quite pricey.
6. Eco Charger
With phones figuring so prominently in our day-to-day activities, running out of battery can be a major inconvenience. To avoid this, many people make the mistake of overcharging their phones, wasting money and energy.
Putting your phone on charge before you go to sleep is energy inefficient, leaving phones charging much longer than they actually need. The Eco Charger app helps to keep phone charges to a minimum, triggering an alarm once the battery is fully charged to let the user know it is time to pull the plug.
Free to download, Eco Charger helps users to save money on their energy bills, preserving the lifespan of their phone’s battery at the same time.
7. Philips Hue
The Philips Hue smart lighting system enables users to control the lights around their home, even adjusting the color and brightness in each room.
Leaving lights on around the home is one of the biggest drains on energy. When we leave lights on unnecessarily, we waste energy and money.
Philips Hue enables customers to set up lighting schedules, turning the lights on and off when they leave or arrive at their home. This free app does require users to install special Philips Hue lightbulbs, with a starter pack containing two lightbulbs and individual color ambiance bulbs.