A dynamic pricing program provides better control for customers—what they pay and when they choose to use power. It allows them to save money and energy, and in turn, helps utilities reduce peak load.
As dynamic pricing programs become more sophisticated, they’re receiving increased interest from federal and state regulators. Similarly, utilities understand the tremendous benefits from more effectively matching the end user’s price with the cost of generating the electricity.
With newer automated dynamic pricing programs, homeowners can not only program their energy-using devices to operate during off-peak hours (when energy is less expensive), they can automatically adjust consumption in response to price signals. The result? A pricing model that more effectively matches supply and demand.
Comverge SmartPrice™ is a complete solution for utilities looking to implement an automated dynamic pricing program. It’s an integrated suite—software, hardware, and services—that reduces the time, cost, and complexity of dynamic pricing implementations. It manages all types of dynamic pricing programs, including time-of-use (TOU), critical-peak pricing (CPP), real-time pricing (RTP), and peak-time rebate (PTR).
Because of its flexibility, Comverge SmartPrice works with AMI deployments or with utilities that have not invested in AMI. It also works with existing broadband and cellular networks to provide fast, reliable two-way communications. This means you can market and deploy a system to your highest usage customers with remarkable precision—without rolling out a full-scale AMI system.
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At the core of the Comverge SmartPrice suite is the IntelliSOURCE® demand response management system. This software enables utilities to send customers day-ahead or real-time price signals to the Comverge web portal, a smart thermostat, or a mobile device like an iPhone.
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The web portal allows customers to quickly set a control schedule for all high-energy-use appliances, including air conditioners, pool pumps, and water heaters. Driven by set-it-and-forget-it design, it’s easy for customers to participate. Even better, it provides a more predictable load drop.
Two-way automated information exchange is the very heart of IntelliSOURCE, aggregating all the adjustments to participants’ control schedules and providing an advanced insight into the capacity made available by the participants.
IntelliSOURCE even supports third-party interfaces for easy integration with your billing system. With seamless data exchange from the meter to the customer’s bill, your company can provide a true end-to-end dynamic pricing solution.
Our hardware solutions use an existing broadband or cellular network to provide a fast, reliable two-way exchange of communications between the customer and the utility. While they eliminate the need for a new AMI system, they can also be configured to work with existing or future AMI investments.
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The IntelliTEMP DirectLink™ controls customers’ HVAC systems. If they wish, those customers can also override the IntelliTEMP settings to further lower the energy consumption of air conditioners or heating systems.
The IntelliPEAK® 910 digital control unit (DCU) is used to control water heaters, pool pumps, and other high-energy use appliances. And because it can individually control up to four discrete loads, the IntelliPEAK DCU saves big on hardware and installation costs.
The success of a dynamic pricing program is tied directly to continuously increasing consumers’ participation in the program. But as a relatively new idea in the market, are there any best practices to help guide marketing and program enrollment? Are there effective ways to ensure timely installation of devices in the field, and provide call center support to participants?
The Comverge IntelliMARKET® service not only helps you recruit residential customers to participate, it creates a start-to-finish approach. It starts with the time-tested principles of first-rate marketing like detailed prospect analysis and segmentation. It continues with recruitment, qualification, and enrollment. It culminates with wide-scale adoption, ongoing support for program management, program administration, field service, and installation/inventory management.
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Installation and Support
Our IntelliSUPPORT® service is another Comverge hallmark. It provides the installation and customer care services so critical to successfully deploying the front-end devices that drive the program.
Our IntelliSUPPORT team handles licensing, permitting, customer service, and installation activities all across the country. From end to end, we’ve got it covered—efficient processing of customer enrollments, installation scheduling and addressing, training programs to help customers understand the service, and much more.
With efficient up-front enrollment, post-installation support, and prompt resolution management, the many aspects of installation and support all build to the main goal we share with you: Ensure high customer satisfaction rates.
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In a dynamic pricing program, achieving a solid base of active participants is just the beginning. The real test is measuring load reduction during an event to make sure the program is actually delivering on its objectives.
IntelliMEASURE® tracks and measures it all. It provides insight into customer behavior, equipment functionality, energy use, and energy demand. The result is a real-time decision-making tool for dynamic pricing program operators.
As IntelliMEASURE gathers and measures the data, we can help you see, analyze, and fully understand the event performance. This means evaluating device usage, forecasting futures based on historical event participation, and ensuring ongoing performance. We even provide additional tools for assessing system and network performance—such as load and event analysis, class/type segmentation, and end-to-end system verification—and provide the necessary analysis for further system optimization.
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