Detecting when a household is occupied by its residents is fundamental to enable a number of home automation applications. Current systems for occupancy detection usually require the installation of dedicated sensors, like passive infrared sensors, magnetic reed switches, or cameras. In this paper, we investigate the suitability of digital electricity meters -- which are already available in millions of households worldwide -- to be used as occupancy sensors. To this end, we have collected fine-grained electricity consumption data along with ground-truth occupancy information for 5 households during a period of about 8 months. Our results show that using common classification methods it is possible to achieve occupancy detection accuracies of more than 80%.
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