Smart meters in Great Britain - Statistics & Facts

Smart meters are part of an advanced metering infrastructure meant to ease monitoring of energy consumption and enabling two-way communication with the supplier. They are most commonly used as an electricity meter, although natural gas and water meters are also available. The meter may be connected to the network via fixed cabling or wireless options.
In Great Britain, a government initiated rollout of smart electricity and smart gas meters began in 2016. However, some energy suppliers have been installing smart meters even earlier. A rollout for England, Wales and Scotland was meant to improve consumer flexibility within the market. By monitoring real time energy consumption, it was hoped that households no longer had to rely on estimated billing and could use energy more efficiently, helping Great Britain move towards a lower carbon economy. The government has extended the rollout period until 2024, when all energy suppliers will be required to offer advanced metering infrastructure to their customers. As of mid-March 2019, the second generation of smart meters has been in circulation. The Department for the Economy in Northern Ireland currently has no plans to install smart meters.

By the end of 2019, utility companies had installed some 16.5 million smart meters across Great Britain. By comparison, the number of traditional meters more than double that amount, despite a notable decline in recent years. The majority of smart meters were deployed to residential units, where the number of smart electricity meters exceeded smart gas meters in every quarter since 2012.
Figures for non-residential rollout were significantly lower. As of 2019, less than 100,000 smart meters had been installed in shops, offices, factories, hospitals, etc. by large energy suppliers.

Of British respondents to a 2019 survey, 69 percent reported being more conscious of the amount of energy they were using since having a smart meter installed, while nearly half said they were now less worried about their bills.

Smart meter shipments are forecast to reach 44 million units in Europe by 2024, making Europe the second largest market following Asia Pacific.

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Smart meters in Great Britain

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Residential rollout

Non-residential rollout


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