With summer just around the corner, iStore is pleased to be featured in the Summer 2023 Edition of “Smart Energy” Magazine. The full text is available below.
MOST PEOPLE ASSOCIATE ISTORE with the smart air-to-energy hot water system that’s built specifically for Australian conditions. Now the company is forging ahead by diversifying into solar inverters and modular batteries, which made their debut at All Energy Australia in late October. The new product range will include innovative 5kW and 6kW hybrid inverters, complemented by modular batteries ranging from 5kWh, 10kWh, to 15kWh capacity.
“iStore’s mission is to forge strategic partnerships with technology leaders, creating tailor-made electrification solutions that meet the unique needs of Australian households. Our foray into the solar energy sector, seamlessly integrated with our existing product ecosystem represents a natural progression,” says Eliese De Oliveira, General Manager at wholly Australian-owned family enterprise iStore.
“Our target is to electrify homes, our end goal – which we are delivering in bit-sized pieces – is to be a one-stop-shop solution within Australia so we will see an expansion of products, we’re adding in broader aspects of electrification to the home. Our range of water heat pumps was our primary product, and last year we introduced pool heats pumps, now, as announced at All Energy, we are getting into the PV side of the market by introducing PV batteries and inverters. “From the middle of year 2024 we will add EV chargers to the range,” she said.
“This new line perfectly complements iStore’s highly successful hot water solutions… iStore firmly believes that intelligent, energy-efficient solutions lay the foundation for a sustainable future.” iStore batteries and inverters are manufactured in China under an OEM arrangement. Security “We want to eventually invest in local supply and manufacturing, but we don’t yet have the ability, the more important thing now is the supply chain; the issue of cyber security in solar is a hot topic right now, certainly in WA where I’m based, and this was the area we wanted to prioritise taking ownership of,” Eliese told Smart Energy. “We have taken precautions using global entity, the Singapore-based Universe EMS [Energy Management Systems] as our developer.
They have several big-name global clients including Nissan that they provide applications for and provide the application using French servers while we are the administrators so any software changes on the inverter side the data is protected. Eliese added that EMS meets stringent international cyber standards which are more developed than Australia’s.
The new iStore range attracted positivity and interest at All Energy where Eliese picked up the noticeable increase of end-users attending the show, from young families with babies up to retirees. “This is exciting as it shows people are invested in the same journey, smart energy is what we are about and electrification of the home, it’s an important matter,” she said.
Eliese attributes the uptick in consumer interest to cost of living pressures and greater awareness of home electrification which is an obvious option for those wanting to live sustainably and gain greater control over their energy assets. “Another trend is the amount of PV installers who want to expand into hot water systems, so businesses are also adopting the mindset of being a whole home solution for their customers, I think this is exciting.”
She explained the timing of the arrival of new iStore stock in mid-November was less than ideal given most installers had booked out their STC spots, however she anticipates stock will move more rapidly in 2024. Meantime the heat pump hot water market is tracking very well. “That is not ground-breaking news but the positive level of volume and enquiries is welcome,” she said. The popular website My Efficient Electric Home is evidence of the increased interest with hot water heat pumps being the most frequently asked question, having overtaken the number of rooftop PV enquiries a couple of years ago.
Pssst… Want to win a BYD Dolphin valued at $38,800? iStore is giving away two cars in a draw: one to a lucky homeowner and the other to an installer (see page 39). Second and third prizes are a hot water heat pump and a 5kW battery. This generous offer is being promoted through iStore and retailers in a collaborative endeavour to reach a wide audience.