This report contains an in-depth look at the smart grid in general, and the smart meter and communication technology employed more specifically. There are two types of communications technology that smart meters employ, 1) home area networking technology used to send usage information into the home for monitoring and potential control, and 2) backhaul technology, which sends meter usage information back to the utility, so the customer can be billed.
With this report, clients can
- Identify the key drivers and the major challenges of the effort to update the world’s electrical grid.
- Get a better understanding of the communication technologies being deployed in smart meters.
- Develop products and marketing plans based on current smart meter trends and long-term forecasts.
This report explores the market dynamics and trends including:
- Companies making smart meter products.
- Chip manufacturers of smart meter communication technology.
- Recovery act grants awarded.
- New communication technology being considered for smart meters, such as white space.
The Drivers of Smart Grid
The Parts of Smart Grid
- Smart Meter
- Back to the Utility
- The Home Area Network (HAN)
Significant Stumbling Blocks
- Privacy Concerns
- Radiation Concerns
- Higher Rates
- Bad PR
Forecasts for Smart Grid
- What These Forecasts Don’t Include
- Smart Meter Forecasts
- Technology from Smart Meter into the House
- Technology from Smart Meter Back to the Utility
Examples of What Is Being Done Today
- Pacific Gas and Electric
- Salt River Project—Arizona
- Baltimore Gas and Electric—Maryland
- Austin Electric—Texas
- Xcel Energy—Boulder, Colorado
- Sacramento Municipal Utility District—California
- Smart Meter/Smart Grid Manufacturers
Holly Smart Meters
Landis + Gyr
- Service Providers
Silver Spring Networks
Related In-Stat Reports
List of Tables
Table 1. Worldwide Smart Meters (Units in Thousands, Revenue US$ in Millions)
Table 2. ZigBee Smart Meters and Clients for HAN (Units in Thousands)
Table 3. Wi-Fi Smart Meters and Clients for HAN (Units in Thousands)
Table 4. Smart Meters Using Powerline to Connect to the Utility (Units in Thousands)
Table 5. Smart Meters Using Proprietary Wireless to Connect to the Utility (Units in Thousands)
Table 6. Smart Meters Using Cellular/Licensed Wireless to Connect to the Utility (Units in Thousands)
Table 7. Smart Meters Using White Space to Connect to the Utility (Units in Thousands)
Table 8. Smart Meters Using Other Technology to Connect to the Utility (Units in Thousands)
Table 9. Smart Meter Technology to the Utility (Units in Thousands)
Table 10. American Recovery & Reinvestment Act of 2009 Contracts, by State (AL Through CA)
Table 11. Recovery Act Contracts, by State (CO Through FL)
Table 12. Recovery Act Contracts, by State (GA Through IL)
Table 13. Recovery Act Contracts, by State (IN Through LA)
Table 14. Recovery Act Contracts, by State (MA Through MN)
Table 15. Recovery Act Contracts, by State (MO Through NV)
Table 16. Recovery Act Contracts, by State (NY Through OR)
Table 17. Recovery Act Contracts, by State (PA Through TN)
Table 18. Recovery Act Contracts, by State (TX Through WA)
Table 19. Recovery Act Contracts, by State (WI Through WY)
Worldwide Smart Meter Revenue to Surpass US$12 Billion in 2016, ZigBee the Early Technology Leader
The smart meter is a device that is at the heart of the smart grid transformation. It records a user’s electrical, water, or gas usage at a set interval, and then provides a way for this data, or a subset of this data, to be read electronically, but that is just its minimum function. Typically smart meters perform many functions; so many, in fact, that new In-Stat research forecasts worldwide smart meter revenues will eclipse US$12 billion by 2016, the vast majority ZigBee-enabled.
“ZigBee has been considered the front-running short range connectivity option for smart grid since its inception, and has maintained its position so far. While the number of ZigBee clients in homes to date is relatively small, In-Stat believes that ZigBee will maintain its dominance,” says Allen Nogee, Research Director. “Although Wi-Fi is pervasive, it has not been a viable choice for the smart grid because the application layers have never existed for Wi-Fi that explain exactly how Wi-Fi devices interact. That will all change with the passage of the IP-based Smart Energy Profile 2.0, expected late in 2012.”
Recent In-Stat research found:
- Powerline is the clear leader in backhaul connectivity from the meter to the utility. However, we are seeing an increasing number of wireless solutions including cellular, white space, and proprietary methods that would use unlicensed and operate in mesh configuration.
- China, the world’s biggest energy consumer, is also the biggest smart meter consumer.
- The number of smart meters deployed in the US per year will decrease after peaking in 2011, but worldwide smart meter deployment will continue to grow.
Recent In-Stat research, Getting Smart on Worldwide Smart Meter Communication Technology (#IN1104731WH), contains an in-depth look at the smart grid in general, and the smart meter and communication technology employed and includes:
- Smart meter five-year forecast
- Technology forecast from smart meter into the house: ZigBee and Wi-Fi
- Technology forecast from smart meter back to the utility: powerline, proprietary wireless and 802.15.4, cellular/licensed spectrum, white space, and other technology
- Examples of current projects: Pacific Gas and Electric, Salt River Project—Arizona, Baltimore Gas and Electric—Maryland, Austin Electric—Texas, Xcel Energy Boulder—Colorado, Sacramento Municipal Utility District—California
- Profiles of smart meter/smart grid manufacturers; Aclara, Echelon, Ember, Elster, GE, Hexing Electric, Holly Smart Meters, Itron, Landis + Gyr, Sensus, and SmartSynch
This research is part of In-Stat’s Mobile Devices service, which provides analysis and forecasts of the market for mobile communications and computing devices, including cell phones, smartphones, MIDs, tablets, mini-notes/netbooks, and notebooks.