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Smart Meters: Global Market Analysis and Forecasts

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This publication has been discontinued on March 20, 2014.

Smart electric meters have emerged as the most visible technology of the major modernization of the global electricity infrastructure known as the smart grid. Smart meters and advanced metering infrastructure (AMI), terms often used synonymously, integrate embedded computing and two-way communications to transform meters from simple manual recording instruments into highly intelligent devices serving increasingly broad roles within the electricity infrastructure. Smart meters have transformed a placid, 140-year old, low-innovation electricity metering market into a high-tech, high-growth juggernaut. In 2008, less than 4% of the global installed base of 1.5 billion electricity meters could be considered “smart” but 4 years later this penetration will have grown to over 18%, and is forecast to exceed 55% by 2020.

Such ongoing growth continues to offer unprecedented opportunities for a broad spectrum of suppliers. However, the smart meter market is exceptionally local, with different drivers, regulatory environments, favored technologies, standards, value and supply chains, and especially, market timing. Most importantly, the smart meter boom is a limited-time opportunity within each region. As anticipated in earlier Pike Research smart meter forecasts, the North American market has already peaked, and faces dramatic near-term contraction, just as the European market begins a similarly dramatic growth period. The Asia Pacific region will continue to outpace all other regions driven by major deployments in China, utilizing a different breed of smart meter technology. The global smart meter market is forecast to experience a modest 4.9% CAGR between 2010 and 2010, but hidden beneath seemingly steady growth are significant regional peaks and valleys, each with their own opportunities and risks. Suppliers seeking to profit from the unique smart meter upgrade cycle must understand the associated technology, standards, and market dynamics behind this regional diversity.

This Pike Research report examines global and regional smart meter market trends, details neighborhood-area and home-area communications technologies and standards, defines and segments various smart meter capabilities, and provides detailed market sizing and forecasts by technology, utility type, and world region for the period from 2010 through 2020. Key vendors, standards, and deployments are profiled, offering a comprehensive window into the dynamic market for smart metering.

Key Questions Addressed:

  • Where and when have smart meter unit shipments peaked, or will peak in the future?
  • What are the key smart meter communications technologies, and how will they evolve?
  • How do smart meter and AMI technologies differ around the world?
  • Which AMI communications technologies (public and private) will lead in each region?
  • How, when, and which home area networking technologies be deployed in smart meters?
  • What are the key policy, technology, and economic risks impacting the smart meter market evolution?

Table of Contents

1. Executive Summary

  • 1.1. Introduction
  • 1.2. Smart Meter Market Forecast
  • 1.3. Evolution of Smart Meters

2. Market Issues

  • 2.1. Metering Market Overview
    • 2.1.1. Meter Types
    • 2.1.2. Common Terms
    • 2.1.3. Business Structures of Market Participants
  • 2.2. Overview of Electricity Market Issues
  • 2.3. Smart Meter Business Case
    • 2.3.1. Improved Utility Operations
    • 2.3.2. Broader Smart Grid-Related Benefits
      • 2.3.2.1. Energy Use Reduction
      • 2.3.2.2. Demand Response and Peak Shifting
      • 2.3.2.3. Net Metering and Local Generation
      • 2.3.2.4. Support for Electric Vehicles
  • 2.4. Industry Dynamics
    • 2.4.1. Meter and Communications “Co-opetition”
    • 2.4.2. Vendor Consolidation
    • 2.4.3. Emergence of Low-Cost Solutions via Asia Pacific Partners
    • 2.4.4. Non-Traditional Market Entrants
  • 2.5. Smart Meter Market Drivers
    • 2.5.1. Economic Drivers
    • 2.5.2. Energy Policy Drivers
      • 2.5.2.1. North America
      • 2.5.2.2. Europe
      • 2.5.2.3. Asia Pacific
      • 2.5.2.4. Latin America
      • 2.5.2.5. Africa
  • 2.6. Market Challenges

3. Technology Issues

  • 3.1. Smart Meter Components Overview
    • 3.1.1. Smart Meter Requirements
  • 3.2. Meter Technology
  • 3.3. Neighborhood Area Network (NAN) Communications Technologies
    • 3.3.1. NAN Purpose and Function
    • 3.3.2. RF Mesh Networks
      • 3.3.2.1. Physical and Link Layer Protocols
      • 3.3.2.2. Network Layer Protocols
      • 3.3.2.3. Performance Characteristics
    • 3.3.3. RF Point-to-Multipoint Networks
      • 3.3.3.1. Private RF Point-to-Multipoint Systems
      • 3.3.3.1. Cellular-Based Systems
      • 3.3.3.2. Performance Characteristics
    • 3.3.4. Power Line Communication (PLC)
      • 3.3.4.1. Low-Speed Power Line Communication
      • 3.3.4.2. Narrowband Power Line Communication (N-PLC)
      • 3.3.4.3. Broadband over Power Line (BPL)
      • 3.3.4.3. Performance Characteristics
  • 3.4. Home Area Network (HAN) Interface
    • 3.4.1. RF HANs
      • 3.4.1.1. ZigBee
      • 3.4.1.2. Other RF HAN Technologies
    • 3.4.2. Power Line Communication (PLC) HANs
      • 3.4.2.1. HomePlug
      • 3.4.2.2. HomeGrid/ITU G.hn
  • 3.5. Other Smart Meter Communications Configurations
  • 3.6. Key Technical Issues
    • 3.6.1. Smart Metering Communications Requirements
    • 3.6.2. Interoperability and the Move to IP-Based Networks
    • 3.6.3. Integrated System Security
    • 3.6.4. . Future-Proofing
  • 3.7. Standards Issues
    • 3.7.1. Who Sets Metering Standards?
    • 3.7.2. “Standard Set of Standards” Efforts
      • 3.7.2.1. National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)
      • 3.7.2.2. European OPEN meter Project
      • 3.7.2.3. Utility-Driven Standardization
    • 3.7.3. Standards Evolution Implications

4. Deployment Issues and Experiences

  • 4.1. Representative Global Deployments
    • 4.1.1. North America
      • 4.1.1.1. Southern California Edison-Edison SmartConnect
      • 4.1.1.2. Duke Energy
      • 4.1.1.3. Hydro One
    • 4.1.2. Europe
      • 4.1.2.1. Sweden
        • 4.1.2.1.1. Vattenfall
        • 4.1.2.1.2. Gutenberg Energi
    • 4.1.3. Asia Pacific
      • 4.1.3.1. China
  • 4.2. Consumer Response
    • 4.2.1. Meter Accuracy
    • 4.2.2. Data Security and Privacy
    • 4.2.3. Health and Safety
    • 4.2.4. The Opt-Out Option

5. Key Industry Players

  • 5.1. Smart Meter and Communications Vendors
    • 5.1.1. Aclara (ESCO Technologies Inc.)
    • 5.1.2. Ambient Corp.
    • 5.1.3. Echelon Corp.
    • 5.1.4. Elster Group
    • 5.1.5. GE Digital Energy
    • 5.1.6. Glen Canyon Corp.
    • 5.1.7. Grid Net, Inc.
    • 5.1.8. Holley Metering Ltd.
    • 5.1.9. Iskraemeco
    • 5.1.10. Itron Inc.
    • 5.1.11. Landis+Gyr
    • 5.1.12. Nuri Telecom
    • 5.1.13. Sagemcom
    • 5.1.14. Secure Meters Ltd. (formerly PRI Ltd.)
    • 5.1.15. Sensus
    • 5.1.16. Silver Spring Networks
    • 5.1.17. SmartSynch, Inc.
    • 5.1.18. Trilliant Inc.

6. Market Forecasts

  • 6.1. Forecast Introduction
  • 6.2. Global Electrical Meter Installed Base
  • 6.3. Global Smart Meter Unit Shipments by Region
    • 6.3.1. North American Smart Meter Shipments
    • 6.3.2. European Smart Meter Shipments
    • 6.3.3. Asia Pacific Smart Meter Shipments
    • 6.3.4. Latin American Smart Meter Shipments
    • 6.3.5. Middle East/Africa Smart Meter Shipments
  • 6.4. Global Smart Meter Installed Base
  • 6.5. Global Smart Meter Unit Shipments by Meter Type
  • 6.6. Global Smart Meter Unit Shipments by NAN Technology
  • 6.7. Global Advanced Smart Meter Unit Shipments by HAN Technology
  • 6.8. Global Smart Meter Revenue and Average Selling Prices

6. Company Directory

7. Acronym and Abbreviation List

8. Table of Contents

9. Table of Charts and Figures

10. Scope of Study, Sources and Methodology, Notes

List of Charts and Figures

  • Electrical Meter Installed Base by Region, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Electrical Meter Unit Shipments by Region, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Smart Meter Unit Shipments by Region, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Smart Meter Unit Shipments by Utility Type, United States: 2010-2020
  • Smart Meter Unit Shipments and Installed Base Penetration, United States: 2010-2020
  • Smart Meter Unit Shipments and Installed Base Penetration, Canada: 2010-2020
  • Smart Meter Installed Base by Region, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Smart Meter Penetration (of All Electric Meters) by Region, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Electrical Meter Unit Shipments with Percentage Smart Meter Unit Shipments by Region, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Smart Meter Unit Shipments by Meter Type, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Advanced Smart Meter Unit Shipments as a Percentage of All Smart Meter Unit Shipments by Region, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Advanced Smart Meter Unit Shipments by Region, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Advanced Smart Meter Penetration (of All Smart Meters) by Region, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Smart Meter Unit Shipments by NAN Technology, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Smart Meter Unit Shipments by NAN Technology, North America: 2010-2020
  • Smart Meter Unit Shipments by NAN Technology, Europe: 2010-2020
  • Advanced Smart Meter Unit Shipments by NAN Technology, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Advanced Smart Meter Unit Shipments by HAN Technology, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Basic and Advanced Smart Meter Revenue and ASPs, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Smart Meter Revenue and ASPs, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Advanced Smart Meter Revenue Percentage by Component, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Typical Smart Meter Network Architecture
  • Selected Smart Meter Business Cases-Operational Benefits
  • Example Smart Meter Form Factors
  • Mesh Network Configurations
  • Star Network Configuration
  • Example ZigBee Mesh Network Topology
  • British Gas/Centrica Smart Meter and AMI Configuration
  • Example SGCC Smart Meter Configurations
  • Example of Select Standards and Standards Bodies for Revenue Metering
  • NIST Conceptual Reference Diagram for Smart Grid Information Networks
  • OPEN meter Architecture
  • SCE HAN Connectivity Concept
  • SCE Technology Vendor Map
  • Duke Energy's Utility of the Future Concepts
  • Duke Energy's Communications Network Concept
  • Hydro One AMI Configuration
  • Hydro One's Smart Grid Concept

List of Tables

  • Smart Meter Mergers and Acquisitions
  • Example RF Mesh NAN Systems
  • Categories of Power Line Communication
  • Smart Metering NAN, HAN, and AMI-WAN Communications Requirements
  • All Electrical Meter Unit Shipments by Region, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Electrical Meter Installed Base by Region, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Smart Meter Installed Base and Penetration Rates by Region, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Advanced Smart Meter Installed Base and Penetration Rates by Region, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Smart Meter Unit Shipments, Average Selling Price, and Revenue by Region, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Smart Meter Unit Shipments as a Percentage of All Electrical Meter Unit Shipments by Region, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Smart Meter Unit Shipments by NAN Technology by Region, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Basic Smart Meter Unit Shipments, Average Selling Price, and Revenue by Region, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Basic Smart Meter Unit Shipments by NAN Technology by Region, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Advanced Smart Meter Unit Shipments, Average Selling Price, and Revenue by Region, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Advanced Smart Meter Component Shipments, Average Selling Price, and Revenue, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Advanced Smart Meter Unit Shipments by NAN Technology by Region, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Advanced Smart Meter Unit Shipments by HAN Technology by Region, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Electrical Meter Unit Shipments, North America: 2010-2020
  • Electrical Meter Installed Base, North America: 2010-2020
  • Smart Meter Installed Base and Penetration Rate, North America: 2010-2020
  • Smart Meter Unit Shipments, Average Selling Price, and Revenue, North America: 2010-2020
  • Basic Smart Meter Unit Shipments and Revenue, North America: 2010-2020
  • Advanced Smart Meter Unit Shipments and Revenue, North America: 2010-2020
  • Smart Meter Installed Base and Penetration Rate by Utility Type, United States: 2010-2020
  • Smart Meter Unit Shipments by Utility Type, United States: 2010-2020
  • Electrical Meter Installed Base, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Advanced Smart Meter Unit Shipments as a Percentage of Total Smart Meter Unit Shipments, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Smart Meter Unit Shipments by NAN Technology, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Smart Meter Unit Shipments by NAN Technology, North America and Europe: 2010-2020
  • Advanced Smart Meter Unit Shipments by NAN Technology, World Markets: 2010-2020
  • Basic and Advanced Smart Meter Revenue and Average Selling Price, World Markets: 2010-2020
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