Our second product at EnergyHub was the Mercury wireless thermostat platform. Mercury is a simple, efficiency-conscious web and mobile app. It also provides education and behavioral nudges for users.
In launching Mercury, a white-label software platform for wireless thermostat manufacturers, we could take advantage of things we’d learned from building the Home Base. First, that in 2011-12, mobile was already becoming the center of people’s interactions with everything on the Internet. And second, that even our most eco-conscious customers didn’t always know what a “good” temperature setting for their home thermostat would be.
Mercury uses clear, direct language and a familiar wizard-based interaction model to help people translate behavior patterns into recommended energy usage levels.
Mercury also provides education. When a user is setting up their home heating and cooling preferences, the system nudges them towards choosing the EnergyStar efficiency levels through visual and text cues. If they choose less-efficient options, the system shows them of the additional cost they will incur. The simple UI cue has big results: 85% of users choose the EnergyStar options or even more efficient settings.
Mercury is mobile-centric. Users can view all the thermostats in each location on one screen, and quickly act to manage the temperature across their home. Each thermostat is its own module, which simplifies navigation and allows the user to manage settings and temperatures efficiently on a smaller screen. The apps have four-star ratings in the iOS App Store and Google Play store
Our process throughout was iterative and agile, collaborating so closely across UX, visual design, product and technology that we quickly got away from traditional deliverables, often specifying behaviors directly on draft visual comps or whiteboarding taskflows with senior leadership.
From concept to launch in under five months
Successful partnership with Radio Thermostat Company of America for Filtrete-branded thermostats
Over 20,000 customers initially migrated to the new platform; currently over 500,000 RTCoA customers total
Additional partners and acquisition by software-driven Alarm.com
Recent independent studies show statistically significant energy savings among Mercury users
Overall creative director
Interaction design and wireframes
Planning and scheduling design sprints with product management leadership
Hiring and managing of freelancers