For many South Africans, a prepaid electricity meter inside their house is an effective way of keeping track of electricity spending.

Thousands of these meters have been installed across the country, but Eskom will from today install smart prepaid meters in Sandton and Midrand.

Eskom says the initial phase of the project will include the conversion of 6 000 households to the new smart meters.

“The programme is part of Eskom’s Smart Prepayment Solution to all customer sectors. Customers are encouraged to convert from their conventional meters to the prepaid billing mode as it has several benefits,” Eskom said in a press statement.

Eskom said that new meters will reduce electricity theft, power outages, will increase control over consumption, and are generally safer.

In January Eskom said it wants to make sure that all meters work as well as intended with Eskom’s grid.

“Eskom Research, Testing & Development Department (RT&D) has conducted extensive research to identify suitable interoperability test tools and is in the process of building a smart meter interoperability test platform at its James Watt Metering Laboratory which is housed at Eskom’s Research and Innovation Centre (ERIC) in Rosherville,” Eskom explained.

Eskom said that these tests allowed the company to independently evaluate interoperability between smart meter products from different manufacturers.

Ultimately it will support Eskom’s aim to fast-track the deployment of cost-effective, reliable and future-proof smart metering technology – such as the ones being rolled out in Sandton and Midrand today.

[Image – CC by 2.0/Brian J. Matis]
Charlie started his professional life as a motoring journalist for a community newspaper in Mpumalanga, Charlie explored different journalistic angles since his entry into the fast-paced world of publishing in 2006. While fostering a passion for the arts, Charlie developed a love for technology – both which allowed him to serve as Entertainment and Technology Editor for an online publication. Charlie has since been heavily involved in consumer technology for various websites and publications. He thoroughly enjoys World War II films and cerebral documentaries; aviation; photography and indie music. Oh yes, and he also has a rather strange obsession with collecting coffee mugs from his travels.