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Kia e-Niro 4 MY20
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Discussion Starter #1
Octopus installed the smart meter today... hurrah!

It doesn't work... Boooo.

They did suggest it probably wouldn't but were happy to give it a try anyway. It seems there's no Arqiva WAN coverage where I live. So, is the whole thing a total farce or am I unlucky to live in a rare dead spot?

We're right on the edge of the East Riding, fairly close to York, in a large village.... this isn't a rural backwater of two houses and a dog.
 

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One of the weaknesses in the SMETS2 rollout programme is that WAN connectivity requires there to be a certain number of meters in a given area: that is, if direct connectivity is not possible, then your data hops along to another meter and then to another meter until it finds one that has a DCC connection. I am rather surprised that they left you with dumb smart meters. What is the process now for getting the meters connected to the DCC?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
They also didn't replace the gas meter for.... reasons.

The mesh network function of SMETS2 is all well and good, but there still needs to be WAN coverage for the area. I don't know how many hops the mesh supports, haven't looked into it. I'd suspect this is really designed for situations where the meters are somewhere like the middle of a terraced house, under the stairs or some such, and need to hop along to one close enough to outside to get a WAN link.
 

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From the Horse’s Mouth (ie, their webpage)

Arqiva, as Service Provider to the Data and Communications Company (DCC), is delivering the communications service needed to connect smart electricity and gas meters in around 10 million homes and businesses in the North of England and Scotland.
We’ve already demonstrated that our solution will connect to over 99% of smart energy and water meters wherever they are using a single long-range radio technology. This spans urban and rural locations, all property types and all meter locations. Our technology is also proven at scale, based on over 37 million meters and devices connected internationally.
 

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AFAIK, the mesh / connecting through other meters is only for the south / central areas covered by Telefonica. I assume your comms hub is EDMI?

View attachment 136335
I stand corrected. From the Smartme website:

Long-Range Radio communications (LRR) is used by Arqiva Limited in Scotland and the North of England. The LRR system uses infrastructure and technology similar to that already used for other important national communications networks, such as those for emergency services and keeping lifeboat stations connected. Communication towers communicate directly with smart meter Communications Hubs in homes.
By 2021 Arqiva Limited will have achieved their contacted coverage of at least 99.5%.
 

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At least Octopus spotted that my location couldn't/wouldn't take a smart meter (near to RAF Linton on Ouse) and put in an Economy-7 meter, so I could at least nod in the direction of a lower overnight tariff.
Felt very old-skool - I'm pretty sure Economy-7 is even older than me.
 
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I have been investigating how to get a Smart meter on Arran, so it is Arqiva with LRR that I may get connected with. Ta.
 

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I think that Linton-on-Ouse is no longer the flying station that it once was. The last that I heard it only had 8 or so light aircraft with its long-term future under review. Many happy memories of a year spent there 50 years ago learning to fly.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
At least Octopus spotted that my location couldn't/wouldn't take a smart meter (near to RAF Linton on Ouse) and put in an Economy-7 meter, so I could at least nod in the direction of a lower overnight tariff.
Felt very old-skool - I'm pretty sure Economy-7 is even older than me.
Interesting they spotted it probably wouldn’t work in Stamford Bridge but didn’t offer me an alternative.
The meter has been installed, but apparently won’t work and is likely to remain dumb :( I also haven’t been left with a home display, which I was sort of expecting.
Still, it’s a neat job.
 

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Interesting they spotted it probably wouldn’t work in Stamford Bridge but didn’t offer me an alternative.
The meter has been installed, but apparently won’t work and is likely to remain dumb :( I also haven’t been left with a home display, which I was sort of expecting.
Still, it’s a neat job.
They decided in advance that my area would be unsuitable for a SMETS2 so fitted a SMETS1 (in June this year). Amazed they didn't offer that option !
 
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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
Taking a look at the indicators this morning, I'm seeing the 5 second flash of the WAN light, which suggests it might be working. Have to wait and see, but potentially good news.

@phproxy my comms hub is the EDMI unit with LRR for the WAN and Zigbee for linking to the gas meter (not installed) and the home display (not provided).

It's an odd setup to be honest. The north/south split doesn't make any sense. Using cellular is likely to be a good option in most places but LRR has the potential to work well. My guess is Arqiva are bolting that on to the radio and TV transmitter sites as, I believe, they operate all of them. Logic being if you can get decent TV/DAB/FM signal you can probably then get LRR coverage good enough for the metering requirements. It's a shame there doesn't seem to be a publicly available roll out map for the service.
 

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I don't like the north/south split, especially where you can get a good mobile signal but no Arqiva LRR, there should be something in place allowing them to connect using Telefonica's network..Its 2G network isn't going anywhere for a while.
Yes, exactly. The southern area has the mesh system as a backup for where 2G/3G doesn't work. The northern area has it about-face with no backup option.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Isn't there barely any electricity in the north with their steam cars and clockwork radios....
 

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Discussion Starter #17
What I don't understand is why they couldn't have a model of display that connects to Wi-Fi in the home, the meters by zigbee and transfer the data that way. The meter needs to have network connectivity and they seem to be going about it in the most complicated and expensive way possible, at least in the north.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Well this plods along and is getting a bit farcical now. I'm also rapidly losing patience with Octopus on this as well, mainly because their e-mail communication seems to have just stopped entirely.

Despite the meter indicating it has WAN service I've been told there's no "450 hub" in the area. This doesn't make sense to me, I'd expect either there's comms signal or there isn't... ah well.

Best I'm being offered is a tariff change that gives me slightly lower gas prices but slightly higher electricity. This is.... not very good.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
It turns out, because seemingly nobody involved is able to articulate what the terms they use mean, the "450 hub" is referring the communications unit on the smart meter itself not, as implied, something in the area. Mine has a 420. I believe the difference is operating frequency. The 420 is 412-424MHz while the 450 is 453-455MHz (ofcom IR2030/32).

It seems the 450 MHz frequencies are used in some areas because 422-424MHz is reserved by the MOD.

What an absolute mess this is.

I'm still puzzled why my meter WAN light is indicating everything is fine.... when apparently it isn't.
 

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Despite the meter indicating it has WAN service I've been told there's no "450 hub" in the area. This doesn't make sense to me, I'd expect either there's comms signal or there isn't... ah well.
The 450 hub is the variant - 420 is standard. The 450 is supposedly just for the Fylingdales area - I'd have thought that you are a fair way from that? If you are then someone has fitted the wrong unit - if you are close then they have some local infrastructure to install.
 
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