Smart meters not so smart after all

The Emalahleni Local Municipality’s smart meter project is well underway and several meters have been installed into a couple of houses already, but there are a few hiccups and people are frustrated.

Vodacom Business, the enterprise division of Vodacom Group has partnered with the municipality to help lessen the burden on the Eskom account by reducing electricity losses.

The auditing of pre-paid meters is currently happening and residents will see fieldworkers with tablets in the area working around the clock, identifying meters that have been bridged. New meters will immediately be installed if a faulty meter is identified.

“It’s all good and well that these smart meters have been installed but you can’t buy electricity from the bank; so much for these so called smart meters,” said a concerned resident.

Globally, utilities have used smart metering to successfully understand electricity usage and supply management.
Smart meters facilitate the communication between the utility and the end-user.


A list of where electricity can be purchased for smart meters.

Through real-time monitoring, utilities are able to measure site-specific information that provides insight into when and how much energy is being used. This allows for more accurate energy usage forecasts and also provides information to encourage end-users to consume energy outside of peak demand times.

“The meters are not registered. I have informed the prepaid section to return and reinstall my previous prepaid meter which worked. It is obvious to me that someone has not done their due diligence on this upgrade,” continued the resident.

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  AUTHOR
Samantha Traill
JOURNALIST/PHOTOGRAPHER

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