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AGL’s Solar Command and IOS app require some serious development for them to be truly useful as analytical and informative tools in my opinion. I can imagine that a great many people who have opted for solar with battery storage are looking to save as much money as possible. To that end, companies like Solar Analytics, Wattwatchers, Fronius and SMA are providing sophisticated web platforms that enable customers to see graphical overlays of energy flows to and from the grid, to and from the battery, and even to specific appliances. All members of the AGL VPP have smart meters so AGL has access to what we import and export, but Solar Command does not allow us to see what is our own data, the better to make decisions about how and when we use energy.
The absence in Solar Command of battery status and exported and imported energy data in the CSV file download means I can’t do detailed time-based analysis to see, for example, exactly when we are importing all this unnecessary peak energy. I wrote to AGL about this in June 2017, but to date, not much has changed. The following are some of my comments as sent to AGL.
WEB SOLAR COMMAND PORTAL
IOS AGL ENERGY APP
2. I would like the app to access my account’s tariffs and therefore provide me with accurate costs associated with b, c and d above, all on a daily weekly, monthly and annual basis.
3. I realise the above list may require at least one more CT to be installed for off-peak monitoring, but if offered, that is a price I would gladly pay because I am not currently getting what I want from Solar Command.
4. The cost of batteries is still so far from economic, even with the VPP subsidies, as my article on the AGL Community blog shows. If AGL are serious about encouraging solar battery uptake, which I believe they are, then I would suggest that AGL should put some serious effort and resources into an iPad app in order to differentiate the company in a very competitive market place. There are some very good reporting apps, such as Solar Analytics, and possibly Sunverge in America, but AGL’s Solar Command, in my opinion, is not one of them.
Please see my profile if you’d like to learn more about other articles I have written on solar energy and my participation in AGL’s Virtual Power Plant solar battery storage program.
Thank you for your taking the time to provide this detailed feedback!
There are some fantastic points here, and we'll ensure that this information is forwarded to our app developers for future reference.