What exactly is a smart meter?


A smart meter measures and records your usage data at 30 minute intervals and transmits it to the electricity network regularly using 3G. Having a smart meter allows you to see detailed usage data in the Amber app. It also means you can be charged the exact wholesale electricity price for your usage during each 30 minute interval, so you can be rewarded for using power at cheaper and greener times.


What are the other types of meters?

Basic meter - as the name suggests these meters are basic. They will only record how much energy is used throughout a 3 month period rather than when. We typically don’t recommend joining Amber if you don’t plan on taking us up on our offer to upgrade your meter for free. Without a smart meter we do not have visibility over the time interval in which you used power, or the amount you used within a certain time period. Because basic meters don't record this information, we cannot charge you the corresponding wholesale pricing, which is the main benefit of Amber.


Interval meter - this is somewhat of a hybrid between smart & basic meters. An interval meter can identify how much energy was used at certain times which allows you to capture the value of wholesale pricing. The downside is that without 3G network connection, usage data needs to be manually read every 3 months like a basic meter, which means you won’t have the same transparency as with a smart meter. You also won’t be able to automate your battery with SmartShift if you have an interval meter.


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