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E.ON launches Smart Pay As You Go Pilot

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E.ON has today announced the launch of its Smart Pay As You Go pilot – a new way of paying that will transform how customers manage the energy they use. As part of this, E.ON is introducing a discount, set at the same level as Direct Debit, for Smart Pay As You Go customers who currently either have prepayment meters or pay for their energy on receipt of their bill.

By continually listening to its customers, adapting to the changing energy landscape and improving the services it offers, this pilot enables E.ON to take the existing benefits of smart meters, such as increased visibility and control of individuals’ energy use, to the next level.  Smart Pay As You Go responds to the wishes of customers, offering a number of additional benefits such as allowing customers to top-up their account anywhere and at any time[5].

Crucially, this new technology also means that Smart Pay As You Go customers will be offered the choice of all E.ON’s tariffs and access to the same prices previously offered only to customers who choose to pay by fixed monthly Direct Debit.

Taking on board feedback gleaned from extensive research, including surveys conducted with E.ON’s 28,000-strong YourSay customer panel, E.ON has designed Smart Pay As You Go to ensure its features cover a diverse range of consumer preferences, including:

  • A variety of quick and easy ways to pay: customers can top-up their meter(s) when they choose and in a way that suits them – by app, online and phone[5];
  • Greater control of energy use: customers can view their balance online, through the E.ON app or on an in-home display at any time and keep track of what they’re spending in pounds and pence;
  • For the first time, customers will be offered the same prices seen by customers who pay by fixed monthly Direct Debit: a £70 discount for a dual fuel customer as part of the £104 potential saving [1];
  • An end to running out of energy unexpectedly at inconvenient times: customers can receive alerts when their balance is approaching zero;
  • Increased emergency credit: customers can receive up to £30 worth of emergency credit to help alleviate the inconvenience of running out of energy[6];
  • Transfer of credit between meters: customers can transfer balances between their gas and electricity meters using their app and online;
  • An end to bill shock: customers who currently pay on receipt of their bill can see what they’re using and spending in pounds and pence, preventing the shock of a large bill[7].

Customers will require a meter exchange if they choose Smart Pay As You Go and will have a smart meter installed in their home.

Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, the Rt Hon Amber Rudd MP, said: “The pay as you go scheme will help those consumers on prepayment meters to have greater control over their energy use and to keep their bills low. We will continue to work with energy suppliers’ to ensure they are listening to their customers and are constantly reviewing the services they offer meet the needs of households and businesses across Britain.”

David Bird, E.ON’s Residential and Customer Operations Director, said: “We understand that for our customers there’s no ‘one size fits all’ when it comes to managing and paying for the energy they use. That’s why we want to provide a range of services that cater for all our customers’ needs – and the launch of Smart Pay As You Go does just that, addressing some of the key issues raised by people with prepayment meters and those who currently pay their energy bills when they receive them.

“We’re pleased to be one of the leaders in providing the services that we know our customers want, as well as strengthening our commitment to those customers who may need additional support.”

  • The Smart Pay As You Go pilot is currently available to existing eligible E.ON customers[3] and will be available for customers new to E.ON from early 2016;
  • E.ON will today start contacting existing eligible customers with the aim of bringing 30,000 onto the Smart Pay As You Go pilot during 2015. Any other E.ON customers who aren’t contacted but think they could benefit can register their interest at eonenergy.com/registerpayg

[1]       £104 is the amount a typical dual fuel prepayment meter customer could save per year if switching from E.ON’s EnergyPlan standard tariff to its cheapest one year fixed price tariff (E.ON Energy Fixed 1 Year V16). This amount includes payment method discounts of £70 per year (£35 per fuel through a reduction in standing charge), which is the equivalent amount received by customers who pay by fixed monthly Direct Debit. Prices valid as of 20 May 2015;

[2]          Larger suppliers are defined as; E.ON, British Gas, EDF, npower, SSE and Scottish Power;

[3]          Customers will need E.ON to exchange their meter(s) for a smart meter(s), and other eligibility criteria will apply – see the Register Your Interest page for more details eonenergy.com/registerpayg;

[4]       £67 less than its closest competitor (OVO’s Smart PAYG Energy Plan), based on a typical dual fuel prepayment meter customer with Ofgem average annual consumption of 3,200 kWh for single rate electricity meters and 13,500 kWh for gas averaged across all regions. Prices valid as of 20 May 2015;

[5]          Subject to phone coverage. Smart Pay As You Go customers will not be able to pay by cash;

[6]       Emergency credit is available to single electricity customers (£20) or dual fuel customers (£30). Customers will need to manually activate this emergency credit option;

[7]       By choosing Smart Pay As You Go, customers who currently pay on receipt of their bill will no longer pay for their energy use in arrears.

 

Source: E.ON