Ecobutton is a simple device that puts your computer to sleep when you are away from the desk, helping to save energy and monitoring the energy you are saving. It claims to save as much as £50 a year.
How does it work?
The ‘button’ is attached to a usb adapter, which will plug into your desktop or laptop. When you press the button, it puts your computer into sleep mode, and monitors the savings being made.
How did it work for me?
I am all for helping to save energy, but this has to be one of the most pointless products on the market. Now don’t get me wrong, the button does exactly what is says on the tin – every time you press it, the computer goes into sleep mode. So what is exactly wrong with the Ecobutton?
Firstly, pretty much every computer and laptop will have a standby button on the computer already. Some will be on the keyboard, by use of the ‘fn’ key, others will require the user to change the settings so that the power button will put the computer into standby instead of powering off, something I do already. Indeed, most modern laptops are recommended not to be turned off too often. So do you really need another button to do this? Especially a relatively bulky one like this.
Secondly, does it really save £50 a year? Well this is down to how you use your computer currently. If you leave it on when you leave the room or pop out to the shops, then using this button will save you money. But if you are really that keen to save money, surely you will be turning your computer to standby anyway, so I just don’t believe it will really save that much money. I also question how much energy is used in running the button and recording the energy usage data. If you currently turn your computer to standby anyway, this will actually make your bill increase, albeit only slightly.
In summary, just have a play with your computers settings and ensure you can easily turn to standby in future. It really isn’t that tricky.