I have just switched to Bulb for electricity and managed to give an erroneous first reading from the so-called smart meter installed by a previous supplier. My false reading has been replaced with an estimate, which is fair enough. But what a pain these smart meters are when you have to submit readings yourself because many suppliers, including Bulb, do not use them (and, absurdly, even if you switch to a supplier that does use them they are often not compatible and have to be replaced). Smart meter displays are not designed to be read by customers. It is difficult enough trying to note down the appropriate reading after pressing ‘9’ before it moves on to numerous other readings. My meter is high up our garage wall and its spindly, poorly-lit display is particularly difficult to read in the few seconds it gives before moving on to various other readings I do not want. How I wish I had stuck with our old user-friendly meter and refused to have one of these awful things installed. The whole smart meter roll-out has been a fiasco and customers are paying for it in frustration as well as in their bills.
Not so ‘smart’ are they? As long as one can carry out basic arithmetic and be able to read an analogue or digital meter then there is no advantage to the consumer whatsoever. Indeed the whole fiasco is costing consumers hundreds of pounds whether they have these wretched things installed or not. The only people who are making money out of this whole sorry and shoddy affair are the manufacturers of the meters. What ‘smart’ meters will enable utility companies to do is charge people higher prices for daytime use.