Despite 30 Rock’s jokes about GE, the appliance company isn’t completely ass-backwards. Case in point: GE just created an air conditioner that’s pretty, almost affordable ($300), and not a huge energy hog. Oh yeah, and you can control it with your smartphone!
The smart A/C unit, Aros, is a partnership with Quirky, the site that helps make your harebrained invention ideas come to life. (In this case, former DOE employee Garthen Leslie suggested it.) A quick six months later, Aros is practically ready (it starts shipping in May). Gizmodo has some tech specs:
GE and Quirky have built a conventional in-window a/c that can cool up to 350 square feet with 8,000 BTU. They’ve added some nice detailing, too, like upward airflow, three cooling and fan modes, insulating fabric panels, and a sleek front-facing paneling.
It’s not Energy Star-rated because it was rushed through development, but it promises to help you save energy by learning your schedule, a la Nest. Rather than leaving the A/C on all day while you’re at work so you don’t come home to hell, you can program Aros to start cooling your place down when you’re leaving work.
Aros’ app Wink also charts your daily energy use and helps you stick within a budget. It’s not the Pocket Microwave, but we think Jack Donaghy would approve.