Home Industry AMR Devices vs. Smart Meters: Which One Is For You
amr devices vs smart meter

AMR Devices vs. Smart Meters: Which One Is For You

by Martha Simmonds

Switching from traditional meters to smart meters is beneficial for households and small and medium organizations as it offers better control over energy usage. Smart meters reduce inaccuracies of the estimated bills and directly send meter readings through a wireless network to your energy provider every month.

And in turn, you will get invoices for the actual energy usage. Switching to smart meters reduces energy wastage, contributing to greater savings and a better environment.

Some large businesses use automated meter reading (AMR) devices, which help monitor energy usage and thus make savings. Even though AMR devices and smart meters appear the same, they use different technologies, provide different performance and benefits.

So let’s look at the difference between these two technologies and compare business energy so that you can easily decide which one is for you.

What is an AMR device?

An automated reading device is a meter that uses a communication channel between the business consumer and the energy provider. This communication is only one way towards the provider.

AMR devices provide kilowatt-hour information and peak kWh demand.

What are the benefits of AMR devices?

  • It also improves the environment by lowering carbon emissions.
  • It removes manual meter reading from the equation and transmits meter readings directly to the energy provider every month.
  • It offers more accurate billing, allowing consumers to analyze and review their energy usage data easily. They can monitor their energy usage and find more efficient ways to improve their usage.
  • You can expect to pay only for the energy you use every month with AMR devices as it provides accurate meter readings.
  • A better understanding of energy usage allows businesses to easily and quickly enhance their energy efficiency.
  • AMR devices also pave the way for flexible tariffs. For instance, you can get time-of-use tariffs that allow you to use more energy during off-peak hours and save money.

What is an AMR smart meter?

AMR smart meters are advanced versions of these AMR devices. AMR smart meters are produced according to an industry-standard known as Smart Metering Equipment Technical Standard (SMETS).

This is why it offers more benefits than AMR devices. They function like AMR devices in automatically transmitting meter readings to your energy provider.

Still, they also allow transmission of data back from the energy provider, thus offering two-way communication. This is because they utilize a centralized data communication company for the communication channel.

Smart meters transmit a lot of daily usages, voltage and outage information, cumulative kWh usage, peak kWh readings, peak kWh demand, time of usage, etc.

What are the benefits of smart meters?

  • It sends accurate meter readings directly to the energy provider, taking manual and estimated bills out of the equation.
  • It also contains the option of Smart Energy Display that allows you to see your energy usage in pounds and pence in real-time, thus allowing you to have better control over energy usage.
  • Enhances security and offers improved tamper detection for equipment.
  • It gives consumers feedback regarding their energy usage to improve their energy efficiency and lower bills.


Even though smart meters are more advanced and offer a lot more features than AMR devices, it doesn’t mean that smart meters are for you. AMR devices are usually best for small organizations and households that do not use a lot of energy or require transmitting a lot of information. At the same time, AMR smart meters are for large corporations who have to use a lot of energy and thus generate a lot of information.

You may also like