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Internet-Augmented Electrical Outlet
NPlug measures room temperature, power consumption and can switch On/Off your electrical appliance from the web. We are integrating all automation examples from the video (scheduler, thermostat, carbon calculator, consumption limit, twitter sharing, etc.)
Precision instrument unlike most powermetters NPlug isn't a toy. We designed it to give meaningful readings even for devices consuming very little power.
Stand alone NPlug connects via WiFi. No need for a computer, a receiver nor any additional device.
Keep control over your data which are stored on cosm.com. Cosm keeps you the sole owner of your data. You may also store your data on a USB flash drive.
Open source firmware all software we wrote for NPlug is open source.
Evolutive hardware NPlug features a programable ZigBee module to talk to existing Internet of Things products and the future ones. Its capabilities may also be extended by standard USB devices: 3G or bluetooth dongle, webcam, USB missile launcher, etc.
Examples of available ZigBee products
Examples of USB devices with available linux drivers
- 3G dongle
- bluetooth dongle
First demo of working prototype (1 year ago)
We are preparing a new video demoing our current working prototype. We've been iterating on our design for quite some time now, so while waiting for the new demo we propose you to watch one we made a year ago! Since then the electronic has been redesigned from scratch and we totally changed our approach of the enclosure: https://vimeo.com/55752637
By the way if you want to learn more about us or check the history of the project we created a Facebook timeline: http://www.facebook.com/nplugit
- Power Cord: US / EU / UK
Power Grid: 110v/220v, 50Hz/60Hz
Power switch up to 3500W
Measurement: 0.1W to 3500W
Power Factor measured by MCP3909
2.4GHz 802.15.4: ATmega128RFA1
Zigbee: BitCloud (Atmel stack)
WiFi: SOC running OpenWrt Linux
USB: Isolated from main power
Get a Working Prototype Fast
Our two last perks allow you to get a version of our actual working prototype. We will have to hand-solder it for you and spend some time helping you to program it. That's why it's way more expensive than the regular perks. It will not be a finish product, but you will be able to study it and have access to its source code right away. We will also send you the final version in priority when done.
What's done, What's left to do
Electronics: We have a solid and well tested prototype. Our actual board still features several solutions that we wanted to test. It needs to be refined for production to make it smaller and easy to manufacture. Certification are planed only for US and EU market.
Enclosure: We have a printed and painted concept (used for our photographs). We need to adapt it for injection molding, and have the mold made. Only one piece is to be molded, we will use a plate for the back.
Embedded Software: We have a functional version both for the Linux board (firmware running our own daemon) and the Atmel MCU. All basic features are implemented (Measurements/Sending/Receiving) and some automations, but more advanced stuff still needs to be added and tweaked.
Web & Mobile Dashboard: We will need to re-design a dashboard from scratch. We only need a front-end as Cosm.com handles the backend. We'd like to design that with you by submitting wireframes gather your feedback modify it, etc.
Open Source & Collaborative Design
As members of the Maker movement we recognize the right of any customer to truly own the product he or she purchases, and to be able to modify it has he wishes. All software we wrote to run in NPlug are open source — as define by opensource.org. Though some parts, mostly written by chip manufacturers aren't.
Collaborative design might just sounds like a buzz word, but in reality it is simple. It means that we will not take your money, enclose ourself in our office and get back to you 6 months later with a product you might not want any more. Instead we will keep you updated of our progress and take your inputs in consideration. We'll have a weekly post to interact with you.
Risks and challenges
Manufacturing: We are at our 5th iteration of the design, though we still need at least one more iteration to have only our final set of components on the board. From that we'll be able to start optimizing for our manufacturing partner. Each of these step implies a risk of additional costs and delays.
Delays: We based our time frame on what each phase should take to complete, but more importantly we monitored how much time similar project have taken to be delivered. Basically we allowed us as much time as kickstarter project's 'Twine' took to ship. It's a similar project, and it ran into a lot of issues so we think we are as realist as we can get.
Certifications: We will have to meet EMC and safety standards. We anticipated these tests. Even if no one can be 100% sure that he will pass these at the first try, our electrical engineer has successfully submitted dozens of products to test labs. We'll be extra careful with suppliers especially for the enclosure which is a major risk for an AC device to transmit fire. Regarding wireless, we are using modules that have already been approved separately to minimize risks.
Were you rejected from Kickstarter?
No, we didn't submit our project to Kickstarter. We are based in France and Indiegogo has a pretty good record of hosting international projects willing to collect funds in US dollars. Besides kickstarter recently excluded home improvement projects from its guidelines.
Can you ship NPlug outside of the EU or the US?
For now we are not planning to have NPlug certified for markets outside of the United States and the European Union. If you are positive that the customs of your country won't seize the package for not complying with local regulations then it is your responsibility to try. Please add an extra $15 to your pledge to cover the shipping cost.
Is NPlug Open Source Hardware?
We are sticking to a proven business model: designing proprietary hardware and releasing all the software we wrote for that hardware under an opensource.org compliant license.
Why specifications aren't mentioning measurement precision?
Batch units testing with lab-like tools has to be conducted to be able to give a satisfying representation of measurement's precision. We were not willing to conduct these tests with our actual prototype. Though you can be sure that we are not building one of those ultra cheap powermetter. The chip we're using (MCP3909) aim at way better measurements. Note, you can't expect to have a Fluke-like tool either!