EU survey by Edinburgh consultancy finds lukewarm support for smart meters

Ratio of respondents who found the products and services appealing (PRNewsFoto/Delta Energy & Environment)
Ratio of respondents who found the products and services appealing 

More than half of consumers across Europe surveyed by Edinburgh-based Delta-ee find connected home energy products ‘appealing – but not at any price’.

Smart heating controls (smart thermostats and multi-zonal controls) topped the list at 70% in Germany, with smart lighting and remote diagnostics offering less appeal.

Arthur Jouannic, manager of the Delta-ee Connected Home Service, commented: “This is encouraging given the low awareness of these products in the market.”

The chart shows the range of appeal for each product between the countries tested (Germany, UK, France and Sweden). Generally, customers in Germany showed most interest, with those in Sweden being on the lower end.

However at current prices these products are set to remain in a niche – on average less than 10% of customers would buy at existing prices. But for certain products uptake could increase quickly if prices fall. For example smart thermostats would have ~30% uptake at €100 and even 60% when offered for free in some countries.

“There is plenty of scope for prices to fall,” explains Jouannic, “both from increasing volumes, as well as the possibility for energy suppliers, telcos, heating equipment manufacturers to subsidise the product cost given the value opportunities they could exploit.

“Industry players have to decide whether they continue with the current approach of high prices and low volumes, or they start stealing the market by having lower prices and rely on upselling services in the future.”

Delta-ee is a specialist distributed energy and heat research and consulting company. It is based in Edinburgh, with offices in England, Germany, Netherlands and Denmark. Clients comprise many of Europe’s leading utilities; heating appliance manufacturers; controls companies; policy makers and investors.

 

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