Pittsburgh ‘Internet of things’ startup ready to pitch energy saving to city officials

Three-year-old Boss Controls LLC links electrical outlets in commercial buildings to the Internet, allowing owners to throttle back usage during nights and weekends. The City of Pittsburgh is expected to hear the company’s pitch in January, according to CEO Greg Puschnigg, who plans a presentation to city officials. Boss is part of the Internet of Things, a term used to describe everything from biochip transponders used to track farm animals to smart home thermostats to self-driving cars, all of which rely on machines talking with machines. The number of such devices is expected to balloon in the coming years and companies like Boss are vying for a place at the table. Energy savings exceeding 60 percent were reported during a two-week pilot study in June at a couple city-owned buildings, according to Boss. The pilot was part of the Global City Teams Challenge, which included U.S. Steel Tower and buildings at Carnegie Mellon University, where energy savings ranged between 40 percent and 50 percent as part of the Internet of Things competition among universities, government agencies and the private sector.