The post was originally written on 23 July 2015.
In Bhopal, the meter-reader takes reading manually, enters the same in a handheld device and gives me the print. The problem is – I try to e-pay the bill as early as possible, but the server of Electricity Company is never updated in real time, and I am made to wait for 5-6 days, or pay manually.
The electricity meter-reading is done by a meter-reader who goes from door to door, enters reading in some handheld device and pushes a button. The machine on the basis of the data of the preceding month stored in meter calculates the energy consumed and a programme embedded in the machine calculates the electricity charges and gives out the print.
The idea is to use compatible RFID tags and a CPU in the electricity meters for data transmission from a large number of electricity meters in one go without employing huge manpower for going from door to door. If every electricity meter transmits the same, using RF, in a periphery of say 50 meters; a receiving station fitted on some vehicle on a specific day of the moth, can capture data of all the meters within this periphery, update the server in real time using
internet, provide the bills to the users through mobiles and emails. This very cost-effective system of data collection will do away with many problems associated with manual system of meter-reading activities.
The gap is in delivery of service. The server of electricity Distribution Company can be updated using mobile technology also, which, when giving out the print, will also update the server. But this system of delivery does not do away with prevailing necessity of a meter-reader, and lengthening his work for a span of 5-6 days. With the broadcast of information from meters fitted with RFID tag and CPU in a region of say 50 meters, the need of meter-reader is averted, and such meters can be appropriately used later in retrieval of other data of various parameters.