Big six supplier British Gas has installed six million smart meters, the company announced today (3 January).

The supplier, the largest of the big six, is leading the rollout with the most devices installed out of all other suppliers.

Sarwjit Sambhi, managing director of UK home, Centrica, said: “Our customers with smart meters are already benefiting from a better understanding of their energy use.

“With the right infrastructure and mass adoption, smart meters can offer easier switching and help increase consumer engagement.

“We have made a significant investment in the rollout to date with six million smart meters installed of the 13 million smart meters installed by the entire industry.

“This has been a challenging process but we will continue to work with Ofgem and BEIS on this vital infrastructure programme.”

So far 13 million devices have been installed across the UK, in a bid to have every home offered a meter by 2020.

The smart meter rollout has been heavily criticised in the past couple of months, with a recent report by the National Audit Office warning that the government’s original ambition of offering a smart meter to every home by 2020 will not be met, whilst the cost of the rollout will likely “escalate beyond initial expectations”.

The government also “underestimated” how long it would take to implement the infrastructure of SMETS2 smart meter devices, according to the spending watchdog.

Over seven million more SMETS1 devices have been installed than was planned, presenting the rollout with significant challenges.

A report published by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) in the run up to Christmas said more than 176,000 gas and electricity second-generation (SMETS2) meters were connected to the Data Communications Company’s (DCC) system by the end of November last year.

The report added the figure marks a “significant increase” in the installation of the more sophisticated devices from the start of 2018.