Sense vs. Neurio Energy Monitor: Head to Head Comparison!

So, you’ve been incurring huge costs in electricity bills?

To deal with the situation and lower your expenses on energy, the first step you should take is to identify what exactly is contributing to the elevated energy consumption.

That is where energy monitoring comes into play. These devices utilize amazing technology to assess how energy is being used in your home, and they present the data in a manner that is simple and actionable.

In your quest to find the right energy monitor in the market, you will likely encounter two common gadgets – the Sense monitors and the Neurio monitors. Both monitors have sleek app interfaces and feature a smart home integration, but how do you know which one suits you better? That is what this article is based on.

Allow us to take you over both sensors, explaining the features and the benefits of each, as well as the differences. That way, making the right selection will be a lot easier.

1. The installation

The process of installing both monitors is virtually the same. Both monitors are installed entirely in the breaker box area. Moreover, they both need a connection to voltage breaker sensor.

Winner: it’s a draw

2. Size

This is one area where the two monitors are different from each other. The Sense monitor is bigger than the Neurio monitor, and therefore it might be a little trickier to install. Due to its size, you might have to install the sense monitor outside the breaker box.

Winner: Neurio

3. The cost estimates

With the Sense monitor, you only get to know how much power you’re using in the form of a particular rate. The Neurio monitor, on the other hand, includes other values apart from the rate of energy use. It gives you additional estimates on taxes and other aspects.

As a matter of fact, if your connection is correct, then the cost that the Neurio monitor indicates should be similar or very close to the electricity bill you will receive.

Winner: Neurio

4. Interface

You can manage both systems on your mobile device using an application. However, Neurio is more advanced in this area as it can be managed via a web application, which the sense monitor cannot. At least not yet but perhaps in future, the manufacturer will incorporate this feature into the device.

If you’re the kind of person who likes seeing everything spread out on a PC monitor, you’d be better off with the Neurio monitor.

Winner: Neurio

5. Pinch Zoom

Your live current usage is normally displayed on a graph on both monitors, and the sensors are designed for utmost detection of the slightest changes. However, there’s a difference. While you can pinch zoom the graph on Neurio to have a better view and take readings accurately, you cannot do the same on Sense.

This feature is also important for customizing the way you want the graph to be displayed.

And do you know what is even more cool about the Neurio current usage display? It shows you how you’re faring against other house with a similar size to yours. That makes you feel like you’re competing with other people on who is saving energy the best. Cool, isn’t it?

Winner: Neurio

6. Security

With Sense, a 128-bit AES encryption is used to encrypt the energy usage data, and therefore Sense is the only one that can access it. Neurio, in contrast, happens to be a bit more open. You can interact with the data directly using the public API that Neurio uses. And do you know what that means? Someone can hack your Neurio monitor but hacking a Sense monitor wouldn’t be easy at all.

But is that all there is to it?

Of course not. If you need a monitor you can customize with ease, go for Neurio rather than Sense. Neurio’s open nature facilitates greater customizability.

Winner: it’s a draw because while Sense offers security, Neurio offers customization ability.

7. Customer care

When it comes to listening to and taking action on customer feedback, Sense, without doubt, has the edge. Its team is always eager to help their customers out whether you’re looking to purchase a device or just need help using one that you bought from them already.

Here’s an even more exciting part – when you make suggestions, and those suggestions are reasonable, there’s a high chance that Sense will incorporate your ideas into the design of an update.

Winner: Sense

8. IFTTT (If this, then that)

Looking at it superficially, you might be tempted to think that Sense is better than Neurio, considering that it has both IFTTT and Alexa while the latter supports IFTTT alone. But let’s dig our teeth deeper.

Sense has only one trigger for IFTTT, that of “device turned on or off”. Although this feature is great, it doesn’t take the whole-home power usage into perspective.

Neurio’s triggers, on the other hand, are all associated with the whole-home power usage. Thus, if the usage goes beyond a particular level, a certain action is taken.

Winner: Neurio

9. Alexa

Do you like issuing voice commands at electronics? Then you will find Sense quite appropriate. At the moment, Neurio doesn’t have Alexa, but we hope future updates will have this amazing feature.

Winner: Sense

10. Monitoring capability

Here’s where one of the most vital difference lies. While Neurio only detects item that are using at least 400 watts, Sense can detect items using as low as 5 watts. And what does this huge difference mean? Though both monitors will be able to detect your electric cooker or washing machine, only Sense will notice that you turned on a light bulb.

Winner: Sense

11. Communication Protocols

Here are a couple of communication protocols that Neurio supports:

  • ZigBee
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    WiFi, 802.11b/g/n
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    RS-845
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    XBee

Sense, on the other hand, supports these:

  • WiFi, 802.11b/g/n
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    Bluetooth

Winner: Neurio

Final thoughts

There is no doubt that both Neurio and Sense are incredibly useful in monitoring energy usage at home. Each of them has something unique to offer, and therefore, if you were to get what totally suits you, your best bet would be to go over the features and see what works for you perfectly. For instance, if using a web application to view your power usage is a priority, you would rather choose Neurio. However, if you love using voice commands, then Sense would better for you. 

Remember the main points: Nuerio.

  • Is more open and customizable with a public API
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    Is available on mobile as well as desktop
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    Is cheaper
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    Is more compatible with smart devices as it supports more communication protocols
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    Issues estimates that are more accurate
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    Avails data even when offline

And Sense:

  • Is more secure as the API isn’t public
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    Can integrate individual appliances more easily
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    Detects devices using much lower power
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    Supports IFTTT as well as Alexa

Overall winner based on highest number of functionalities: Neurio.

We hope this article helped you make a decision on which of the two power monitors you’re going to buy. If so, we ask that you share this article with your friends on Twitter; it will only take a few seconds.  

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. Why do I need a power monitor?

Without an energy monitor, it becomes very difficult to determine how much electric power you’re using at any particular time. But with one, you have precise live statistics of energy usage. This empowers you to figure out what could be gulping down power and come up with ways of saving energy.

2. Which one is easier to install between sense and neurio?

Sense is larger in size than neurio, making it more difficult to install because, in fact, there’s a chance it won’t fit in the breaker box.

3. Do smart monitors interfere with WIFI?

According to what some people say, smart monitors that use wireless networks might cause wireless interferences, and it makes lots of sense. They argue that as these devices send waves to communicate with each other that create a mesh network, or rather an avenue for WIFI interference.

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