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Shadow Energy Minister visits E.ON in Bolton to get a glimpse of the smart metering future

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E.ON’s Bolton based Smart Metering Centre of Excellence has given Shadow Energy Minister Jonathan Reynolds a glimpse into the future of energy.

Mr Reynolds joined E.ON’s 85-strong specialist team in Bolton to hear about how smart metering will help end estimated billing, eliminate the need for visits from meter readers and enable customers to track their energy use in real time.

During the visit, Mr Reynolds took the opportunity to don a headset and listen to customers’ calls and hear for himself the positive experience E.ON’s smart meter customers are receiving.

The nationwide full smart meter roll out, which is estimated to bring national benefits worth almost £7 billion(1), is due to begin in 2015.

E.ON has already begun installing smart meters in customers’ homes with over 300,000 meters fitted so far. Research has shown that over 90% of customers are happy to have a smart meter in their home and more than 8 in 10 smart meter customers say they would recommend having one to family and friends(2).

Simon Duncan, Manager of E.ON’s Smart Metering Centres of Excellence, said: “We’re delighted to have the Shadow Energy Minister with us so he can see for himself the benefits that smart metering is bringing to our customers. We’ve been installing smart meters for about two years now and we can already see how they are giving customers greater visibility into where and when they use energy, enabling them to use no more than they need.

“We hope that Mr Reynolds will take this experience back to Westminster and share his learnings to help ensure the whole industry is geared up for this exciting and essential upgrade of our energy supply infrastructure next year.”

Jonathan Reynolds, Shadow Energy Minister, said: “It was great to see how committed the team at E.ON are to the rollout of smart meters. Smart meters deliver important benefits to customers including accurate bills and better understanding of energy use.

“Early indications suggest that on the whole, E.ON customers with smart meters are happy with their meter and feel in greater control of their energy use.”

1. Department for Energy and Climate Change Impact Assessment, ‘Smart meter roll-out for the domestic and small and medium non-domestic sectors (GB)’, published 24th January 2013;
2. Based on a uSswitch.com survey of E.ON and British Gas customers with and without smart meters, published 12th December 2013.