7/23/2010 11:45:00 AM
BT throws down the smart meter gauntlet to operators
BT is challenging mobile phone operators in the race to grab a share of the Government’s £7bn smart meter programme.
The telecoms giant has set up a partnership to deliver a smart meter network based on a 400MHz long range radio bandwidth, which BT says will provide a superior service to smart meter services using mobile networks.
BT’s partnership with broadcasting firm Arqiva and information management expert Detica comes ahead of this week’s publication of a consultation document on the Government’s smart meter programme.
Launching the partnership, BT said: ‘BT is backing long range radio after spending 18 months analysing the various communications options available to meet the needs of the smart metering initiative.
‘Unlike mobile, it can provide truly nationwide coverage and dependable reception indoors. The fact it operates on dedicated licensed spectrum is also important, as it is ideal for ensuring the security of supply and protection of consumer data while meeting the needs of the energy industry.’
A BT spokesman told Mobile: ‘Arqiva have a dedicated 400 MHz band, while the mobile solution potentially is a shared solution on increasingly crowded networks. We believe our solution is the strongest way forward and we hope to convince the Government of that.’
The move is a direct challenge to Vodafone, which has joined British Gas to pitch for smart meter opportunities and Orange, which is proposing a smart meter trial involving National Grid’s subsidiary OnStream.