Britain’s £13.5bn smart meters FIASCO: Power firms’ costly digital roll-out is delayed by FOUR years as millions of devices are plagued by glitches

The rollout of smart meters has been delayed by four years, [British] ministers admitted last night.

In an embarrassing climbdown, they announced that families will now have until 2024 to install one of the devices.

The scheme has been so shambolic that only around half of homes will have a smart meter by the original 2020 deadline and the estimated cost has soared by £2.5 billion to £13.5 billion [AUD$24.8 billion].

Only two million of the 15 million properties with the devices have models that automatically allow customers to switch supplier.

Customers can refuse to have a smart meter, but firms face fines if they have not done enough to promote the devices. This has led to concerns that energy giants have resorted to ‘blackmail’.

Aggressive practices include limiting the best tariffs to those with smart meters. Households have complained of technical issues, with many saying their device had stopped working after switching supplier. Another common issue is broken display screens, which show customers their usage rates.

The Government initially said every household and business must have a smart meter by 2020. But it quietly backtracked on that pledge in the 2017 Queen’s Speech by saying the meters needed only to be ‘offered’ by that time.

The delay shows the Government has ‘finally recognised reality’, according to Gillian Guy of Citizens Advice. Mrs Guy added: ‘We’ve seen some energy companies use aggressive techniques to try to persuade people to have smart meters fitted as soon as possible to meet the existing timeline. We are pleased the Government is extending the deadline.’

‘It’s also apparent the cost of the rollout is escalating, and the public are picking up the tab through their energy bills.’

Abridged from the Daily Mail.

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6 Responses to Britain’s £13.5bn smart meters FIASCO: Power firms’ costly digital roll-out is delayed by FOUR years as millions of devices are plagued by glitches

  1. Paul Phillips says:

    I am asking does anyone know about the replacement gas meter the company id Multinet Gas Networks.?
    Are they replacing the current meter with a smart meter?
    Can we stop them?

    We are in Australia and have just got this notice in the mail.

    Kind regards


    • Andrew Samman says:

      Hi Paul

      From the following Multinet Gas website FAQ’s

      “Will you replace my gas meter at the same time as these works?

      No, your current gas meter will be connected to the new pipes. However, if it is determined during the mains upgrade works that the current meter requires replacement, our contractors will complete the meter replacement as deemed necessary.

      Should you require assistance with relighting appliances following the meter replacement, please contact our Faults and Emergencies department on 132 691.”

      If they determine your meter needs replacing, I would assume the new meter would be smart meter capable, although it would initially be manually read until Multinet decides on a RF method to use, ie 3G, 4G or even 5G. This would most likely involve fitting the appropriate RF card later on to the new gas meter.

      If the Multinet contractor decides you need a new meter, please ask for the make & model number of the replacement gas meter. With this info, we can find the technical specifications of the meter, and its smart meter capabilities.

  2. Jeanette Kirk says:

    penalised for not having smart meter installed re having solar power

  3. Deja Vu says:

    Hmm, front page news. And deja vu re the bullying tactics used to ‘persuade’ people to accept a microwave emitting device. Victorians also endured bullying tactics so the power companies could meet their targets. And the situation is hardly better in other Australian states. They tell us it is a customer driven rollout in other states but I’d hardly call installing smart meters while your back is turned ‘customer driven’. And cost blowouts? Seen that before.

  4. Pingback: Britain’s £13.5bn smart meters FIASCO: Power firms’ costly digital roll-out is delayed by FOUR years as millions of devices are plagued by glitches — Stop Smart Meters Australia – New Human New Earth Communities

  5. pcwwp says:

    How can we be ruled by such idiots? Does not bode well..

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