AMR: The Better Fit for Your Community?

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The biggest discrepancy between AMR and AMI is AMR’s continued reliance for community Meter Readers. Although the appeal of AMI is the cost cut of a utility’s Meter Reader fleet, this methodology essentially cuts off the utility’s main connection to the community it serves.

Meter Readers capturing MMR and AMR data have a presence in the community that can’t be replaced by automated systems. In a world of digitalised services, utility consumers may feel more at ease knowing that they have a physical Meter Reader attending their meters, checking for faults and any inconsistences.

Using AMR increases the chance that faults are identified while Meter Readers are in the vicinity of a potentially affected unit, which enables them to pragmatically assess the situation at the scene. Faults can range from broken equipment to dishonest offences, and the quicker they’re dealt to, the better. Safety and peace of mind of the customer should always be a high priority for utility suppliers.

Having an AMR system necessitates Meter Readers to be present in the community they serve and act as the ‘face of the company’. Utilities uphold the value of supporting and being involved in the community when they keep Meter Readers employed and physically visiting their customers’ neighbourhood.

AMI and AMR are both beneficial processes to implement across utilities. However, not all utilities should justify the incredible investment necessary to apply AMI to their network when an AMR alternative can more cost effective with similar benefits.

Visit the DataCol team at DistribuTECH 2016, (booth 969) to discuss the additional benefits of implementing AMR in your community.


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