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Zuoxiang joined Delta-EE’s Paris office in 2019. He supports both Energy Insights + and Connected Home services. Before joining Delta-EE, Zuoxiang had 3 years’ experience in laboratory in University of Electronic Science and Technology of China, focusing on advanced energy storage technology. He also worked on market research for microgrids at Total.

Zuoxiang holds an Engineering degree in Energy Networks from CentraleSupélec and a double Master’s degree in Energy Engineering and Physics from University of Paris-Saclay.

The role of energy insights in competitive European energy retail markets

With rising customer expectations, stronger competition in energy retail markets and a shift from commodity to energy services, residential customer engagement becomes an important component of success for energy suppliers. They are looking to energy insights services as a critical tool for customer engagement and to unlock opportunity for new energy services. Delta-EE’s energy insights database helps energy companies better understand the evolving landscape of retail market competitiveness, smart meter rollout, residential customer numbers and churn and energy insight app usage across European countries and retailers.

All the data used in this article come from the energy insights customer engagement database.

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The wave of Connected Air Conditioning is coming to Europe

The US AC control market was hit first by the digital revolution, with companies such as Nest, Ecobee and Honeywell becoming the three best sellers of smart thermostats, but AC in the US and AC in Europe are two completely different systems. The first is a centralised system with one thermostat in the middle of it; the second is made of room by room units of AC which are each controlled with an infrared remote in most cases.

In Europe, connectivity specialists have decided to start with smart thermostats (for boilers) and connected radiator valves (TRVs), the two main control products in the largest EU countries. More recently, they have also been looking at other kind of products controlling space heating, hot water or space cooling, and it is now clear that Air Conditioner controls are one of the next growth potentials.

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The interactions between HEM, the electricity system and energy communities

As my colleague Alix Weil explained in her blog, a strong growth is expected in the market of Home Energy Management (HEM) and we believe over 2.3M homes will be equipped by 2023. This is mostly driven by the optimisation of self-consumption and of dynamic electricity tariffs.

We defined HEM as optimising the energy flows in the home, and this is only a part of a wider trend towards a more distributed, democratised energy system. Particularly linked to HEM, two other elements of the energy transition can see huge benefits from managing energy in the home:

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