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CBI: What can technology do for energy consumers?

One of the biggest challenges the energy market faces is engaging consumers. Technology can play an important role in helping to build a relationship of trust between businesses and their customers, which in recent years has been brought into question.


For years, the amount of gas and electricity we use in our homes has been measured by meters tucked away under stairs, in basements and at the back of cupboards that only get opened when it’s time to read the meter and let our energy suppliers know how much we’ve used.

But with the installation of millions of Smart Meters in our homes over the coming years, the CBI believes there is an important opportunity to change the way we use energy. These smart meters will also be an important foundation for new technologies and innovative ways for business and consumers to communicate with each other.


What will smart meters do for me?

These new meters will measure how much gas and electricity we are using and send the readings to our energy suppliers and our In Home Displays. We can use the smart meters to help us save money on our energy bills, put an end to estimated billing, and provide a platform for new technologies and innovation.

 Smart meters are the new gas and electricity meters that send data to you and your energy supplier so that you know how much you’ve used.
What’s an In Home Display?

The In Home Display that comes with a smart meter shows us how much energy we are using. Putting our energy usage right in front of our eyes can help to make us more aware of when we are using energy and how much we are using, a useful reminder to turn off appliances we aren’t using!


Will it make paying my bill easier?

The meters most households have now can’t tell your energy suppliers how much gas and electricity you’ve used without someone taking a reading and sending it to the supplier. So, when energy companies send you a bill, they often have to estimate. Energy suppliers recognise that accurate billing has been an ongoing challenge for the industry, and can be a source of customer frustrations. Estimated bills will be a thing of the past as the smart meters send the readings direct to your energy supplier.


What else are companies doing with technology to help me?
 In Home Displays are small devices that show your energy use and how much it costs on a screen.

Beyond smart meters, technology has an important role to play in helping consumers control their energy usage. You can now control your heating from your mobile phone, and use apps to understand and pay energy bills, as well as find the best energy supplier and tariff. Many businesses are now making the most of this opportunity by creating new products and using them to better communicate with customers.


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