JouleBug Launches Energy Saving Gamee at SXSWi

Posted by at 10:30 am on March 14, 2011

JouleBug, a new social app that encourages energy-saving habits through friendly competition, has announced their launched at the SXSW. A free iPhone app, JouleBug provides users with practical, easy-to-implement tips for saving energy in the real world. It’s a reality-based, casually-social game that rewards users with points, pins and badges for learning and practicing energy-saving habits in their day-to-day lives. Users can link JouleBug to their Facebook and Twitter accounts to share and play with friends.

JouleBug uses social achievements and automatic integration into the social network to add significant moral incentives.JouleBug paces the player for as long as they receive a power bill. The player’s bill will be presented each month on the iPhone and once a player has played for a few months, it will be accompanied by the badge history so they can see how earning badges affected their power bill. This positive, data-based feedback helps reinforce JouleBug users’ good habits.

Earn Badges for Energy Savings

JouleBug is designed as a frictionless app – users are invited to start building their energy savings without creating an account. Users are initially presented with a number of pre-selected tip badges to work towards; the Badge Genius learns a user’s habits over time, and begins recommending personalized badges based on the highest impact. New badges identify hidden energy costs and reveal ways a user might be wasting energy without knowing it. The app’s goal is to help users use less energy and spend less money without a lot of effort.

Players can also link the game to their power company account; JouleBug will create a graph showing energy-savings over time, making the individual benefit of good energy habits clear. “Saving energy is not something you do once. It’s a lifetime goal, and it’s helpful to have a supportive community of friends working towards the same goals,” says co-founder James Wicker. “At the personal level, players lower their energy usage and save on energy costs in a fun, easy way. On a larger scale, it’s a way to lower the stress on the entire planet.”
JouleBug can currently link with power companies in selected areas, covering about 10% of the United States. The founders anticipate having coverage in over 50% of the country in the next few weeks, and almost the entire country by year end. The SXSW launch represents the first public version JouleBug. In the coming months, the founders will introduce versions for new platforms, as well as new features expanding the social aspects of the game.

Visit the JouleBug booth at SXSWi, Booth 645.

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