IoT transforming solar efficiency in South Africa

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Coming off a record year for residential solar panel installations in 2023, the integration of the IoT and with solar energy systems is revolutionising how South Africans view home efficiency and energy independence.

“There’s an incredible opportunity to combine technology with daily home use to create homes that are smarter, more efficient, and more cost-effective,” said Ross Mains-Sheard, Co-Founder and CEO of Versofy SOLAR.

“As smart home gadgets and apps become more common, we’re seeing new, exciting developments that are tailored to improve our daily lives and help households save money.”

Versofy SOLAR is spearheading these advancements through their Versofy HOME app, which leverages the IoT to optimise residential solar and energy consumption.

“We don’t see ourselves as just a solar company, but rather a technology company,” Mains-Sheard explained. “Our entry into the home through solar is just the beginning. Our overarching goal is a sustainable, economical, and efficient world for our customers, where waste is minimised, and energy is optimised.”  

The app provides IoT-driven value-added services that lower usage and costs through dynamic energy and solar monitoring. As an integrated smart home control hub, Versofy HOME allows homeowners to get the full value from their solar investment.

Mains-Sheard notes a global shift is occurring, with South Africa embracing the IoT’s ability to revolutionise how homes utilise energy through connectivity and data analytics.  

“By tracking energy consumption and production in real time, South Africans can make smarter energy decisions to lower usage and costs, and upgrade their system when needed,” he said.

This IoT-enabled home energy management represents a crucial foundation for smarter, more connected living spaces.

“Apps that accompany solar systems are a great foundation on which other technology can be integrated, including ways to manage and monitor a household’s water use,” explained Mains-Sheard. “As a water-scarce country, the benefits of this for South Africa are enormous, and it’s through examples like these that we see the future of technology in the home.”

Beyond immediate efficiency gains, this tech-driven vision carries profound economic implications.

“Our long-term goal is to reach a point where homes with solar are more economically viable than those without. This isn’t a distant dream either. With a few more adjustments in energy tariffs, we could be there, leading to mass adoption of solar technology. It also opens up the chance for individual households to sell energy back to the grid once net metering is introduced.”

These innovations dovetail with international sustainable living trends. As energy consciousness grows, the role of technology in optimising solar will become vital.

“In the South African context, this also speaks to households achieving greater levels of independence from the national grid through solar energy,” Mains-Sheard said. “These advancements promise a reduction in carbon footprint and energy costs and a significant enhancement in the quality of life.”

(Photo by Tobias Reich on Unsplash)

See also: 5G RedCap set to dominate cellular IoT growth

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