Crowd Comfort makes building management more tailored.
Keeping a building cool in the summer, and warm in the winter, isn’t all about efficiency, it’s also about the personal preferences of the people inside. Crowd Comfort is the world’s first crowdsourced thermostat, which asks people to rate their comfort level, and then combines all the data to figure out the best temperature for each floor.
Eric Graham, Crowd Comfort’s co-founder and CEO, explained to FastCoExist that it’s the “human side of the equation.” It’s an often overlooked aspect of building management, “Sometimes, there’s a disconnect and data management problem with the occupants of the building,” says Graham.
The company came to life with the help of two incubators in Boston, Greentown Labs and North Shore InnoVentures. Now it’s able to walk all on its own and has already secured a contract with GE for one of their 300,000-square-foot buildings, as well as the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority, which wants to trial the app in stations, and possibly even its trains.
Smart thermostats have already made a name for themselves, especially the Nest thermostat, which is now under the wing of Google. Many of them focus on algorithms and other forms of computer intelligence, whereas Crowd Comfort focuses just as much on the human element, which could be enough of an edge for it to leave its mark on the market.