By Patrick Caiger-Smith
Green Energy Options has rapidly built a reputation for itself in the metering industry. Now with a proven track record in supplying in-home displays to utilities and working closely with meter manufacturers, GEO’s range of in-home displays has become the first choice solution where the objective is “making energy visible”.
Let’s face it, cooperation from the homeowner is crucial to a smooth, cost effective transition to smart meters. So why not take away potential aggravation by engaging the customer first!
Displays will strengthen the relationship with the customer by giving them something they value. Soften the blow of swapping out their meter by turning it into a positive – displays give the consumer a tangible benefit from this otherwise disruptive activity!
You never know – if the residents feel they are getting real value, they may even be in on the day the engineers turn up!
WHAT TYPE OF DISPLAY DO YOU NEED?
“Push” displays are simple, “always on” displays that do just what they say: give users immediate and simple-to-understand information that they can act on immediately – such as tariff changes and alerts.
“Pull” displays generally use more advanced screens such as TVs and PCs to give far more detailed information, are not “always on” and may need the user to do something to see the information. Both types can have a degree of control as well as giving the user a variety of different features with which to control energy consumption.
They both have a role to play but it is push displays that provide the initial engagement.
RANGE OF PRODUCTS
GEO’s range of displays includes both real time and in-home displays and gives a sliding scale of options to the utility. There is a different display for each potential customer segment. As one goes up the range the features and benefits increase. It’s up to the utility to decide who gets which product.
Crucially, visible displays are not just about showing the raw numbers: they are about engaging the user and delivering information in an understandable and intuitive way. GEO prides itself on finding ways of presenting information that everyone can easily understand – Grannie Miggins, Little Johnny as well as the engineer in the family!
With a variety of push and pull in-home displays installed into over 270 homes in the UK we have found some interesting trends. For those people who are not already engaged with their own energy consumption, push displays are of most use. Having small amounts of easy to understand information “pushed” at one results in a greater degree of engagement and behavioural change than pull displays such as PCs, which require the user to interact with them.
In the UK, the government-backed Energy Savings Trust has identified the most user friendly way of displaying energy to people. It was GEO’s “minim” in-home display that was held up as the ideal solution. All of our displays use the same analogue way of showing data – it’s intuitive and simple to understand and allows non-technical people to quickly understand what they are seeing.
UNIQUE PRODUCT FOR YOU?
Not only can we create a bespoke display for you showing your own brand colours and company logo but we can do this very quickly. GEO has an established supply chain currently building one in-home display every 15 seconds. With a track record in meeting the needs of UK utility companies, we have shown we can deliver a new display from agreed specification to delivery in large volumes within nine months.