One the UK’s largest operators of smart electricity and gas meters in the UK has signed a deal with O2 to provide the communications infrastructure for its network of devices.
O2 will provide G4S Utility Services, a division of the UK security company formerly known as Group4 Securitas, with around 200,000 SIM cards and a secure network connection with which to monitor and manage the metering devices.
The deal represents O2’s first foray into smart meter networking. This emerging field represents a potentially lucrative opportunity for mobile telecommunications providers, as the challenge of linking thousands of metering devices is similar to operate a network of mobile phones.
“We believe there are real opportunities to use our network to accelerate the roll out of smart meters by helping utilities companies and other suppliers to deploy and manage the devices in a quicker and more cost effective way,” said O2’s business director Ben Dowd.
G4S has contracts with British Gas’s business division to support smart metering functionality across the UK.