Like I suspect a fair proportion of the users of these forums I am a dedicated techie and I have worked in the IT industry for many years. I have been looking at the use of SMETS meters and how they would benefit me as a customer.
I would firstly say that I am quite impressed with what I have discovered in that whilst SMETS is arguably currently being false advertised as a way for customers to save on energy costs the technology has been designed in a way that should eventually help achieve this and in a way that is I feel very forward thinking - especially for anything that involves the Government. Sadly politicians and to a lesser extent the relevant bodies have an appalling reputation for a almost total lack of technical/scientific literacy so this has been a big and pleasant surprise.
Sadly so far the energy industry and even more bizarrely the manufacturers of the relevant devices are proving a major obstacle. In the case of the energy providers this seems to be a mixture of ignorance - perhaps only by senior management, and perhaps laziness. However I cannot understand why the device manufacturers are also proving so much of an obstacle. The obstacles being created by the energy providers and device makers are having the affect of preventing the forward thinking goals built in to the smart meter design and for example would prevent the possibility of using this data to intelligently schedule the use of energy consuming appliances to operate at cheaper, lower energy demand times of day. One of the forward thinking goals is for appliances like washing machines to be able to directly link to the same HAN - Home Area Network used by the smart meters so the washing machine could do this itself. I get the impression Bosch amongst others is exploring this.
(To have access to near real time energy usage data you need a CAD - Consumer Access Device, this can query your meters as frequently as every ten seconds compared to at most every 30 minutes using your energy providers web portal system.)
In theory if one had a CAD and linked it a smart home platform then one could use smart plugs to provide a similar interim way of scheduling appliances intelligently. Indeed to a very small extent this is what Bulb’s link to Samsung Smartthings would hopefully lead to.
There are now (allegedly) a number of CAD devices available. However every single one I have found so far seems deliberately to be locked down so you can only access your data via the device makers web portal rather than locally from the CAD device. This not only might limit the data you can access unnecessarily but also means you are affected by any Internet outages.
Worse still it seems nearly every single one of these CAD devices with one exception can only be acquired via your energy provider, for example the Chameleon IHD used by Bulb (and others energy providers) only sells their products to the energy providers and this includes the version with built-in CAD module. This seems a particularly stupid decision by the manufacturers and indeed in some cases one wonder how they expect to sell their CAD products at all since the energy providers are exhibiting zero interest in this - even if end users like myself and others are.
It should be noted that it is perfectly legal for a customer to buy a certified CAD and a regulatory requirement that energy providers connect it to your smart meters.
Now whilst Bulb are not perfect I would have to rate them as above average in terms of helping their customers in this area. See my earlier comment about Blub linking to Samsung Smartthings.
Has anyone yet found a UK available and certified CAD that supports local access without having to download it back from the device makers cloud service? (Data goes from the SMETS meters to the CAD to the cloud and you then have to download it back from the cloud to your home.)
What CAD devices can be purchased directly by end users? (The only one I found so far is Hildebrand.)
Sadly the Rainforest Eagle-200 is not certified and they appear fat and lazy being that they are happy only being able to sell in North America.
From another thread in these forums I get the impression that the Presciense Mira may be the only UK option with even a theoretical chance at providing local data access. See - https://presciense.com/gateways/mira
Although even here I get the impression that would be more by accident than design.