Tendril Teams with Whirlpool Corporation to Rollout Smart Appliances

February 01, 2011 by Jeff Shepard

Tendril and Whirlpool Corp. unveiled a relationship that sets the stage for the rollout of smart home appliances in the U.S. Tendril states that its platform has the capability to support millions of smart appliances in homes across America.

Tendril will provide the back-end technology infrastructure to support the commercial deployment of smart appliances, including a range of connectivity-enabled services and applications. Whirlpool Corporation will integrate its smart appliances with the Smart Grid infrastructure by extending Tendril’s open standards-based, scalable and secure technology platform. This integrated platform will enable a dialogue between appliances, consumers and energy providers – making the connected home and home energy management a reality. For example, for a refrigerator to actively manage its energy consumption, it must be able to quickly, reliably and seamlessly communicate with the electric utility company.

"The backend infrastructure required to make this happen is a critical component of the solution," said Joseph Lui, global Director of Connectivity, Whirlpool Corporation. "By leveraging Tendril’s highly extensible energy service delivery platform, Whirlpool will be able to provide consumers with a desirable solution to better manage their energy usage and spend."

In this case, the refrigerator will automatically move its defrost cycle to a non-peak time without impacting the performance of the appliance.

The Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) estimates that implementing Smart Grid technologies could reduce electricity use by more than 4% annually by 2030. Smart appliances can have an even more profound impact on reducing expensive peak demand as well as supporting renewables (e.g., solar and wind) on the Grid. Consumers will also be excited by the new convenience features enabled by a smart appliance.

"This will forever change how consumers interact with their appliances and how they conserve energy in their homes," said Adrian Tuck, CEO of Tendril. "We believe this will help consumers become increasingly energy-wise and, in the process, help utilities effectively manage peak loads on the grid."