The number of smart meters – devices that smartly measure a building’s energy consumption – installed worldwide will skyrocket in the next few years, according to a recently released Pike Research study. According to the report, the number of smart meters installed globally will reach 535 million units by 2015.
That number is more than double what the group predicted in its fourth quarter 2009 forecast, which predicted 251 million units for the same year. The study also forecasts double digit growth, with an estimated 963 million smart meters being installed, by 2020.
Pike Research attributes the surge in smart meters largely to regional waves of adoptions across the globe. The forecast is for growth in North America to peak in 2012, followed by a peak in Asia in 2015 and then Europe in 2017. Gradual long-term growth is then expected to take place in Latin American countries, the Middle East and Africa.
The increase in adoptions of smart meters is often part of larger small grid initiatives which are on the rise in a number of projects in Asia. The largest contributor in the adoption of smart meters is in the Asia Pacific region, with China in particular being a leader in this green tech area.