Electric utilities are making steady progress in upgrading their customers' analog electric meters with digital smart meters, according to a new report by the Institute for Electric Efficiency
The report, "Utility-Scale Smart Meter Deployments, Plans, and Proposals, May 2012
," found that nearly 36 million smart meters had been installed across the United States, equivalent to a third of all households, as of May 2012. This is an increase from about a quarter of all households with smart meters in September 2011.
By the end of this year, IEE predicts that 22 electric utilities in 16 states will have smart meters installed system-wide. By 2015, more than half of all U.S. households will have a smart meter, IEE estimates.
Installing smart meters is an important part of the electric power industry's efforts to modernize the electric grid. In addition to power notification and outage management benefits, smart meters also open the door to other customer benefits, including improved customer communications and energy management tools.