Energy minister Claire Perry has confirmed to parliament that the number of SMETS2 meters connected to the Data Communications Company’s (DCC) network is 220,000.
Responding to a question posed by Labour’s shadow energy minister Alan Whitehead, Perry said: “As of 18 December 2018, industry information showed there were over 220,000 SMETS2 meters connected to the national smart metering communications network.
“We expect the number of SMETS2 meters to continue to ramp up as energy suppliers continue their transitions from SMETS1 to SMETS2 meters.”
This figure is slightly higher than the 176,000 cited by a government report which was published in the lead-up to Christmas. It included figures up to the end of November 2018.
The government and the DCC, which supplies the infrastructure that enables the meters to communicate with energy suppliers and network operators, have targeted the rollout of a quarter of a million SMETS2 devices by the end of last year.
The smart meter rollout has faced criticism in recent months, with a report by the National Audit Office warning 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.
Perry had a smart meter installed at her home in August 2018, seven years after the rollout commenced in 2011.