It seems that our homes always collect more gadgets, appliances, and electronics, and the electricity required to power them can really add up. And the electronic devices we often forget about – like our modems, routers and cable boxes – draw power 24 hours a day. Thankfully, the electronics industry has taken notice.
Thanks to voluntary agreements among proactive electronics manufacturers and trade associations, consumers can look forward to more energy-efficient cable and Internet devices in the near future.
All the Channels Without All the Energy
According to the National Cable & Telecommunications Association, 85 percent of American households have some type of set-top cable box. Many of these households have more than one set-top box installed in separate rooms, multiplying the amount of energy consumed.
There are no federal standards dictating the energy consumption of set-top cable boxes, and even if there were, the current pace of technological development is so swift that any such standards would likely be obsolete by the time they could be implemented. So in order to standardize the efficiency of these devices, 11 telecommunications companies have voluntarily partnered with energy efficiency advocates to bring the array of set-top boxes in line with the rigid standards of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Energy Star program.
As of December 31, 2013, the set-top boxes provided by these telecommunications companies already met Energy Star standards. And by the end of 2016, all of their boxes will meet even higher efficiency standards.
Surf the Web, Save Some Cash
A similar voluntary agreement was reached among Internet Service Providers, electronics manufacturers, and their suppliers to improve the energy efficiency of modems, routers, and other devices that help us connect to the Internet. This agreement mandates ongoing energy upgrades through the end of 2017, ensuring that most households will soon have access to the most efficient Internet equipment available.
Efficiency improvements in Internet connectivity equipment will become increasingly important in the era of smart and connected homes, as more home appliances and systems will depend on Internet access for optimal performance and proper communication.
“This agreement will begin saving consumers energy and money – and do so long before any mandatory regulatory standards could take effect – while protecting innovation and competition,” Gary Shapiro, president and CEO of the Consumer Electronics Association, said in a June 2015 press release. “By setting requirements for energy-efficient broadband equipment now, the agreement will lock-in efficiencies at the dawn of the Internet of Things, which depends on strong broadband networking.”
If you want to learn more about ways to reduce your electricity bills or implement the latest energy-efficiency technology in your home so you can begin enjoying the Internet of Things without worrying about an increase in your energy bill, contact a trusted electrician today.