In the UK, the company responsible for centralising smart meter data CGI has selected network operator Gamma as a sub contractor to connect energy suppliers to the Data and Communications Company (DCC).
UK company Gamma, which specializes in simplified software services for business, will provide back-end communications using its own next-generation MPLS network.
The network will allow business systems at gas and electricity suppliers, network operators and energy service companies to access the DCC and allow data from smart meters within their service areas to flow into the central repository, a key part of the UK's smart metering implementation plan.
Tara McGeehan, vice-president utilities at CGI UK, said: “Gamma’s technology is a key part of the communications to the DCC User Gateway and the rollout of the smart meter programme which will help to establish a more reliable and secure nationwide electricity supply to consumers. This is a great step towards delivering the DCC solution.”
Missed 2015 deadline
The announcement follows embarrassment for CGI late last year as it had to concede that the central data centre would not be ready to process smart meter information by the UK government-set start date of 2015.
The DCC said in November 2014, that there was “no feasible way to maintain the timescales of the current… plan”.
A spokesman for the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) confirmed that the start of the main installation programme would be delayed from 2015.
DCC proposed to push back the start date until October 2016 and has said that the changes will add up to GBP90 million in further costs.
Energy suppliers are supposed to start the full national installation programme in late 2015, when a central communications system to handle data transfer between meters and suppliers was due to go live, and complete the roll-out by 2020.