As the smart meter rollout continues to progress, Smart Energy GB have released the latest edition of their outlook report. It summarises national public opinion to smart meters from both those who do and don’t have them.
Everyone should be offered smart meters by 2020, with the ability to accept or decline, as preferred. For those who have already had one installed, this new research suggests 79% would recommend smart meters to others; this recommendation rises to 86% amongst low income users of smart meters.
Using the IHD
One of the most useful aspects of having a smart meter is the ability to view your energy spend in pounds and pence, and in near real time. Many smart meters come with in home display units (IHDs) which can sit in the home and show data transmitted from your meters.
This latest batch of research from Smart Energy GB shows how IHDs are changing people’s interaction with their energy spend:
- Eighty seven percent of those with an IHD say that they have a better idea of what they’re spending on energy, compared to 69 per cent who have a smart meter but no IHD
- Eighty one percent of those with an IHD are satisfied with their smart meter compared to 67 percent who don’t have one
- Seventy eight percent of those with an IHD check it regularly (at least a few times a month)
- Thirty three percent check their IHD every day
Eight in ten (80%) people with a smart meter have taken at least one step to reduce their energy use; this includes the most popular of turning their heating down, and turning off lights — with would result in a visible cost reduction on an IHD.
Report shows regional differences
When it comes to knowing exactly what a smart meter is, it seems that England, Wales and Scotland are all very similar in terms of understanding.
The most savvy on smart meters is the East if England (35%), and the least knowledgeable is London (25%). This information lines up to data suggesting group renters have the lowest understanding of smart meters at just 18% — and with such a high proportion of Londoners renting, it’s no surprise that this affects the region’s low stat.
Out of those who understand what a smart meter is, the North East comes out on top for wanting one (79%), and the least interested in getting smart meters is the East Midlands (65%).