Efficiency_2.1: Mobile App to encourage energy-conscious purchasing decisions

06 September 2013

In collaboration with partners from ten European nations, evolaris will develop a mobile app which is designed to support users in making energy-conscious purchasing decisions.

Graz. The project’s kick-off took place during the second quarter of 2013. Within the framework of the EU project Efficiency_2.1 a mobile application which points towards energy-efficient products and informs users about certain energy topics will be developed during a two and a half year period. The project is financed by the European Commission’s “Intelligent Energy Europe” funding programme.

The mobile solution will be designed to meet the highest technical and functional standards. Particularly through the integration of Social Media and Gamification elements, a playful approach towards energy related subjects will be enabled. By simply scanning barcodes in shops, users will be able to gain specific information regarding the energy-efficiency of the considered product e.g. washing-machines, television sets, microwaves. Based on this information, users have the possibility to either reinforce or rethink their purchasing decisions. The app will match the country-specifics of the ten participating countries and will be developed for iOS and Android operating systems.

In a playful manner users of this specific smartphone application will be motivated to take energy-conscious decisions. Gert Breitfuß, project manager of evolaris, points out that the main challenge in particular will be the design and specification of the app. On the one side users should be animated to take decisions towards energy efficient products and on the other side the app should also be fun to use in daily life situations.

For that reason, at an early stage of the project, evolaris has identified best practice examples regarding the increase in motivation and uses of co-creation – specific techniques for joint development of applications together with end customers – based on expertise gained from the evolaris Living Lab. Consumer- and environment-organisations involved in the project will ensure the widest possible dissemination of project results.

The overall project is conducted by the Austrian Energy Agency (AEA) which brought the competence centre for mobile communication and innovation evolaris on board to function as usability experts for mobile applications and to coordinate technical realisations. Christian Kittl, chief executive and chief scientific officer of evolaris, considers this ambitious project an important bridge to the EU programme Horizon 2020, which is the follow-up of the seventh research framework, defining the challenges associated with energy efficiency as one of the core issues.

Visit our project Website: myEcoNavigator

Gert Breitfuß