The global health crisis that we have currently overcoming, has had a negative effect on the economy. Nevertheless, it has also provided some positive side-effects, e.g. people are more calculated when it comes to investing their time, energy and money. This consequently means that systems, services and products must work on an elevated efficiency level and simultaneously be affordable and sustainable. The energy sector is no exception, moving towards greater efficiency and growing in renewability and sustainability.
SOFIE energy data exchange creates tools to support the path to a greener energy. We wrote about it in one of the previous blog posts. In this piece, we dig deeper to unlock the user experience of SOFIE platform in energy data exchange. For this purpose, we create hypothetical but realistic scenarios of two SOFIE solution users to illustrate the impact and benefits of the SOFIE platform in these storylines.
Meet SOFIE user Jeff - the conscious saver
Meet Jeff, who is a rather regular homeowner from Germany, living in a private house in the Berlin suburbia. He has heard that switching to low carbon energy production has substantially raised the price of energy. This comes from the reality that solar, wind and hydro (i.e. low carbon) energy is cheaper by nature but the production, maintenance and the energy grid support system are more expensive. As an economically conscious person, Jeff immediately releases that he needs to acquire a new contract to keep his expenses stable or even decrease them. He joins the SOFIE platform and enters the energy market to get at least a 30% cheaper energy bill for his household in a month.
SOFIE platform consists of globally distributed SOFIE adapters that act as a personal bodyguard of Jeff’s energy data. Anyone (service provider, auditor, datahub) who wants to see Jeff’s data has to get approval from it. Jeff provides and updates the list of allowed visitors who get access to his data. The personal bodyguard, aka the adapter, then does the rest by creating the link between Jeff's energy database and the service provider, allowing one to see your energy data. It even keeps all the records, who has visited and stores them in a secure and immutable way to have the proof in case there are disputes on who did what with Jeff’s data. So, if Jeff restricts some services to access his data, he has actual evidence of this if needed in the future.
Jeff uses SOFIE web portal to download the SOFIE app. He then enters the SOFIE platform and joins the electricity data sharing and service providers network. When using the app he gets an authentication key only he knows. This key is linked to his digital certificate (SOFIE decentralised identifier) and will be the starting point of any connections made to his data.
Jeff’s authentication process when he logs in to the SOFIE platform.After establishing access, the SOFIE “bodyguard” is all set up and Jeff can now see all the energy consumption data in his dashboard. This is the info that he will be sharing to service providers to get better deals for him.
Jeff’s energy consumption dashboard (12h period) with smart meter readings.
With the help of the system Jeff identifies himself, finds the service provider and grants access to electricity meter data. After that the service provider will sign a contract with him and in Jeff’s case provide a 25-35% cheaper energy bill.
Jeff’s energy service providers list & where he grants access to his data.
Jeff can be sure that from this point forward he can be the first to benefit from new energy flexibility services as switching to best providers is made smooth and safe through the SOFIE platform and waiting for months or even a year to have your energy contract changed is history. Besides the luxury to choose from whom he buys his energy from; Jeff also knows that he is in control of his data as the ever-watching SOFIE bodyguard is constantly monitoring and keeping access to his data safe.
Meet SOFIE user Sara - the solar panel enthusiast
There is also Sara who lives with her family in a farmhouse in the countryside of Poland. Her family has invested in solar panels on top of the roofs of her house and the barn, powering her entire household with renewable solar energy. Now, Sara wants to sell the excess energy produced by her household and get the best possible price by avoiding vendor lock-in, i.e. a situation where the cost of switching to a different service provider is so high that she would essentially be stuck with the original service provider that didn't give her the good deal. So, she too joins the SOFIE platform and enters the energy flexibility marketplace to sell her energy with the goal to get the best deal.
Sara gets the same functionality as Jeff when she’s using the SOFIE platform that gets its “superpower” from globally distributed adapters. She has now a bodyguard who controls and lets in the approved parties. As there can be many solar energy retailers that want to help Sara, the critical point is to not waste resources when connecting and disconnecting different providers. This is exactly what the SOFIE adapter allows her to achieve. With the installation of adapters from solar energy resellers' side, the bridge will automatically be made to access energy data according to regulations, ditching the costs that they otherwise would have to make in each customer’s side.
Now, let’s see how Sara starts her SOFIE journey. Initially, she takes the same steps as Jeff, using the SOFIE app to enter the energy marketplace. She connects to a network and is able to see how much energy is produced by her farm’s solar panels. Through the connected network Sara is able to select a service provider that takes care of her energy production and bidding to the market, when the access to data has been granted.
Sara’s solar energy production dashboard.
Unfortunately, things with the first service provider don't work out as expected for Sara. Even though there is a lot of sun out in June, the price that Sara gets for the production as well as paying for the operation is not what she expected.
This is where the use of SOFIE federated adapters comes to play. Sara cancels the contract with the first service provider, restricts its access to her data and selects a new one, without any extra fee to be charged. This is possible because the data access is done via adapters and not held in each service provider premises.
Sara’s energy production data access status.
With the second service provider, that has more experience and larger customer base not only in Poland, but also in Lithuania and Germany, the outcome of the energy production profit is much higher, and Sara is happy about the switch. She soon has the necessary savings from the sold energy and can go on a holiday trip with that money.
The transformation to cleaner and more sustainable energy solutions is an on-going process and global change. What could be better to be part of that change and save money during the process as well? Each household’s contribution in the evolution of a greener planet is critical.
Jeff and Sara can be certain that they are getting good deals from the service providers - a 30% cheaper energy contract is excellent for Jeff and having an option to change energy resellers is definitely an economical advantage for Sara in times when the energy market is changing rapidly. At the same time, they are cultivating a conscious energy consumption and production, contributing to a more sustainable future.
If you want to be like Jeff and Sara and have flexibility and power when it comes to your energy data and ultimately your monthly energy bills, then contact us and let's find out how you can be part of the story and benefit from future services that are already at your doorstep.
- SOFIE energy data exchange pilot is led by Guardtime OÜ.
- HERE is a video to watch to get some more information how SOFIE adapters work and what this is all about.
- Learn more about SOFIE energy data exchange pilot HERE.