Ed Davey has urged energy suppliers to offer ‘pay as you go tariff’ options to all prepayment customers by the end of 2016, as Siemens launches innovative new solution which meets this requirement now.

As the trend towards smart enabled mobile transactions continues to rise, Siemens has launched the latest in its line of smart metering solutions, with the introduction of a Smart Pay As You Go (PAYG) service for energy customers.

The solution, which is already being used by a UK energy supplier, will help energy consumers top up their smart electricity and gas meter how they want, when they want and virtually anywhere they want; using the internet, a smart device app, text message, in store or by telephone.

Ed Davey MP, Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change recently wrote to all energy suppliers urging them to ensure that their pre-payment customers are prioritised in the national roll-out and that they get the benefits of smart meters sooner rather than later. The Siemens Smart Pay As You Go (PAYG) Solution will help support this strategy by ensuring that the latest smart metering payment technology is available to energy retailers right now. 

Kevin Tutton, head of operational services at Siemens Smart Grid Division, said: “Around 4.3million (16%) of households in Great Britain currently use prepayment meters and we want to help reduce the stigma attached to prepayment metering by offering customers a greater variety of payment methods and making this type of metering a lifestyle choice, rather than a last resort for repayment of debt. At Siemens, we aim to be an integral part of helping energy retailers make a success of the smart metering roll-out and are developing a comprehensive range of smart metering solutions and services, such as Smart Pay As You Go and our award winning Smart Multi-Dwelling Units (MDUs) Solution to do just that. Developing an effective, secure payment solution to support energy suppliers with their smart metering roll-out to prepayment customers is a high priority for us. We’re delighted to already have this technology in place and are ready and able to support energy suppliers in meeting this challenge and bringing greater flexibility and convenience to customer right now.”

For customers, Siemens Smart Pay As You Go (PAYG) will:

· Allow more convenient and flexible ways to pay;

· Enable top up of energy accounts when they want, how they want and virtually anywhere they want; using the internet, a smart device app, in store or by telephone;

· Send a text or email alert  to warn a customer when their meter credit is low, so they can top up immediately; 

· Help customers stay in control of their energy use and reduce energy costs by providing graphical representations of their consumption and spend.

For energy retailers, Siemens Smart Pay As You Go (PAYG) will:

· Put consumers in control of their energy use and spend, resulting in an improved customer convenience and experience;

· Help energy suppliers differentiate their propositions in a post RMR market;

· Manage customer payments, customer accounts and help customers more effectively manage any debt on their account;

· Reduce cost to serve through more effective customer communications, self serve, reduced complaint levels and less service visits;

· Reduce mis-directed or unallocated payments through account validation at point of payment.

Siemens Smart Pay As You Go Solution is a global, fully configurable PAYG solution which can be easily integrated into IT systems and can also be used to manage both smart prepayment and credit customers.