Smart Energy GB asked Populus to conduct this research to better understand if, how and why smart meters – and the smart meter
rollout programme generally – change energy usage behaviour and what factors contribute to this change.
In May/June 2017, Populus surveyed 2,332 people. The research observed differences in energy usage behaviour between three
groups: those without detailed knowledge of smart meters, those with detailed knowledge who do not own a smart meter, and
those with detailed knowledge who own a smart meter.*
In line with the previous publication of “Smart meters and energy usage: a survey of energy behaviour before and after upgrading to
a smart meter”, published in April 2017, this research surveyed those over the age of 18.
Smart meter customers featured in this publication did not necessarily take part in Populus research.
There are now more smart meters in homes than ever before and the positive impact of having a smart meter on people’s energy
behaviour which was identified in “smart meters and energy usage” (April 2017) has been maintained
– Those who may experience additional barriers to getting their smart meter installed, or to using their smart meter, are more likely to claim
they are spending less on energy since getting a smart meter*. Those with personal physical barriers are doing more energy saving
activities than those with other, or no additional barriers
– Those who have had a smart meter for more than 2 years are more likely to say that they understand what they need to do to save energy
around the home
– In-home displays (IHDs) are the most prevalent methods used to look at energy data and elicit the highest frequency of checking. When
multiple viewing methods are used together, we see an increase in energy saving actions
*Compared to audiences without additional barriers. Definitions of additional barriers can be found on slide 24