Why Watts?

We were doing some housecleaning, and found some articles from our earliest days. What a great walk down memory lane! If you ever wondered why we’re called WattzOn, here’s what our co-founders Saul Griffith and Raffi Krikorian wrote in 2008:

“A watt is a unit of power that indicates the rate at which you are using energy. For WattzOn (circa 2008), we normalize all of your profile answers so that you can see the average power that you are using in every moment of your life.

We chose watts because we want to change the conversation on personal accountability in climate change away from the common “carbon footprint” and towards collective energy reduction.

Measuring in power rather than carbon emissions recognizes that it will not be possible to support our current lifestyles with any energy technology that we could implement in the near future – our needs are not sustainable. While there certainly needs to be a reduction of fossil fuel reliance by increasing alternative energy infrastructure, energy reduction will need to be part of any solution to this global challenge.”

Learn more about the philosophy behind WattzOn (or check out this shorter version from the O’Reilly 2008 Web 2.0 Summit), and in this video presentation.

Today at WattzOn circa 2015, we still argue that reducing energy use is still the most straightforward way to contribute to climate change solutions. Our varied customers — cities, military housing, property managers, and solar companies — show how the conversation has expanded.


WattzOn Labs is always innovating ways to engage people to save water and energy. It showcases the WattzOn products under the WattzOn Labs private-label. We don’t market these products, but use this small-scale direct-to-consumer experience to constantly evolve and learn. Then we apply the findings to the rich, private-label products used by all our customers at WattzOn.