My Flooring Story App Released to Flooring America Members

Version 1.0 of the new iPad My Flooring Story was released to Flooring America and Flooring Canada members today at their conneXtions held in Washington D.C.

The app will help users visualize what Flooring America products will look like in a customer’s own home.

All you do is take a picture of the room, cut out the area to be replaced using simple hand gestures, and then select a new floor covering from the library.

Ballast Lane built the application and developed a scalable approach to managing the samples and sharing output with users and store owners.





Ballast Lane Engaged by IFPRI for Android Field Survey App

The International Food Policy and Research Institute has engaged us to build a custom Android survey tool to be used to support a study on the economic choices made by farmers and other business people in remote locations.

The app will support custom survey creation, graphical presentation of economic scenarios and upload of results to a server for answer analysis.

You can learn more about IFPRI here.

Green Button App Selected as Finalist by U.S. Department of Energy

The Emission Information app, developed by Ballast Lane Applications, was selected as a top four finalist in the US Department of Energy’s American Energy Data Challenge.

Additionally, the app was recognized for its innovative use of the Green Button data standard and how the combination of usage data and the carbon footprint profile of the electricity actually consumed can help users make better choices.

We will be demoing the app at the finalists’ presentation in Washington DC later this Spring.

You can read more about the challenge here.

Behavioral Economics Study supported by Technology from Ballast Lane is Published

Hunt Allcott of NYU and Richard Sweeney of Harvard recently published their study results in a paper called “Information Disclosure through Agents: Evidence from a Field Experiment” which share findings of how consumers respond to energy efficiency information and incentives when purchasing water heaters.

Water heater purchases are mundane (as the authors state in their paper), but give great insight into how people respond to information and make tradeoffs between short term costs and long term savings. Turns out that most people are not interested in that tradeoff and that it takes sales incentives to customer service agents and upfront rebates to consumers can overcome that resistance.

Here is the abstract:

“With a large nationwide retailer, we run a natural field experiment to measure the effects of energy use information disclosure, rebates, and sales agent incentives on demand for energy efficient client durable goods. Sales incentives and rebates are complementary, but information and sales incentives alone have statistically and economically insigni cant effects. Sales agents comply only partially with the experiment, targeting information at the most interested consumers but not discussing energy eciency with the disinterested majority. In follow up surveys, most consumers are aware of the energy efficient model and may even overestimate its benefits, suggesting that imperfect information is not a major barrier to adoption in this context.”

You can read the study here.

Congratulations to the authors!

Ballast Lane Integrates Green Button Data into Emissions Information App

Ballast Lane Applications and Emissions Information, Inc. have partnered to incorporate Green Button consumer energy consumption data into EI’s Power Advisor app for the Energy Department’s American Energy Data Challenge.

The power advisor app provides a five day forecast on when electricity in your zip code is most clean (lowest CO2 emissions rate) based on the power generation sources engaged at the time. This information is not available to consumers anywhere else and helps them make choices about when to use discretionary electricity to reduce their carbon footprint.

So far, there are two versions of the app available one released for NRG Residential Solutions Customers and the other available to other potential users with an in app purchase option to gain access to all the functionality.

The version submitted to the energy app challenge incorporates hourly usage data to give users an exact picture of their electricity usage and resulting CO2 generated. Users can also see there average electricity consumption by hour per month and how much they use during “cleaner” and “dirtier” times. It is a great step forward and helps user understand the impact their choices make on the environment.

The EI Server pulls in the hourly energy usage data (currently sandbox data) and combines the data with emission intensity data from the EI warehouse to serve the app with the information it needs for each view.  Customer data is then added to save commitments and generate push messages to remind users of their commitments.

Screenshots from the app below show the dashboard, snap shot of your monthly CO2 and detailed hour by hour analysis of your consumption vs. your peers who are using the app.

DashboardCO2 For UserEI App

Please enter a comment below if you would like to be alerted when Green Button data enabled apps go live for your region.

NRG Clean Power Advisor is Live

We are pleased to share that NRG Residential Solutions’ new app – Clean Power Advisor – is now live on iTunes and ready to download. You can get it here.

Emission Information, Inc. hired Ballast Lane to develop the iOS app. We worked with their design firm East Coast Catalyst and the server team from Integradevs to deliver this innovative app. It is the only source of real-time data on the cleanliness of the electricity generation in your area.

iOS Simulator Screen shot Jan 3, 2014, 5.47.18 PM

Freedom$ Gets Usage Bump from Money Magazine Blurb

Hearts and Wallet’s Freedom$ app received a nice bump in downloads from a quick blurb in the September issue of Money Magazine. As you can see from the graphic, the mention is small, but it had a decent impact with several thousand users taking the time and effort to find the app in iTunes (this blurb was only in the paper version of the magazine so they had to type) and check it out.

Most interesting though, was the performance data we gained from this focused group. Using Flurry Analytics and the data we collect on the back end, we got the following usage insights:

45% of downloaders register

  • First Name and Username (required)
  • Last Name, Email Address (optional)

73% enter Assets, Debt & Income* (*Percent of registrants)

  • Nearly $800K in average assets
  • 5.0 average Freedom$ Ratio – Assets / Yearly Income

69% calculate Independence Score*

  • Answered questions about their behaviors
  • Most users answered all 16 questions

16% took action*

  • Set goals for improvement
  • Committed to actions (average 5.8 actions)
  • Set reminders

All and all, we were pleased the level of engagement in the app from these users. Based on the feedback and behavior of users, we further updated and simplified the app interface to make it easier to use.

iOS Simulator Screen shot Jan 3, 2014, 8.38.01 AM

iOS Simulator Screen shot Jan 3, 2014, 8.38.14 AM

iOS Simulator Screen shot Jan 3, 2014, 8.38.17 AM