Gothenburg, Sweden, August 10, 2010 – New research from the analyst firm Berg Insight says that the worldwide installed base of smart electricity meters will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 31.1 percent between 2009 and 2015 to reach 302.5 million at the end of the period.
During the next five years, penetration rates for smart metering technology are projected to increase from around 15—20 percent today to nearly 50 percent in Europe and North America, while Asia-Pacific is projected to soar from less than 1 percent to 25 percent by 2015.
By the mid-2010s, the majority of all electricity meters shipped in the world’s leading economies is expected to have advanced functionalities and networking capabilities.
Berg Insight anticipates that growth will continue in the second half of this decade, with many markets approaching 100 percent penetration by 2020.
Berg Insight has identified a number of common drivers behind the development in all regions. These range from increasing efficiency demands on the electricity sector to the implementation of energy policies related to power conservation, renewable generation and the security of supply.
National governments play a key role in the adoption of smart meters through new future-oriented energy policies, addressing these issues.
Several European countries have passed legislation that require nationwide rollouts before the end of this decade and in the US, federal grants for smart grid projects constitute one of the main initiatives aimed at the energy sector in the Obama administration’s economic stimuli package.
In East Asia, governments directly influence developments through state-controlled national utilities. China’s State Grid Corp. and South Korea’s KEPCO have both announced their intentions to construct smart grids featuring smart meters before 2020.
“Smart metering is now a globally accepted mature mainstream technology”, said Tobias Ryberg, Senior Analyst, Berg Insight and author of the report. “All over the world we can see how IT and telecommunication has transformed the metering industry from a business of mechanical devices and manual labor to an arena for state-of-the-art technology in everything from wireless networking to data warehousing and complex system integration.”
Looking ahead he predicts that the current wave of adoption will pave the way for an even greater transformation of the electricity sector where the access to detailed information in real-time will fundamentally change how power is generated, distributed and consumed.