EDF Energy will be the first utility company in the UK to make the move to Windows 8 Pro. The utility company will be rolling out 1,000 Panasonic Toughpad FZ-G1 Windows 8 Pro tablets to its field operatives so they can easily send and receive job information for smart meter installation work.
While the UK government is working on rolling out smart meters to replace 53 million meters in 30 million homes in England, Wales, and Scotland by 2020, EDF Energy is already rolling out new Windows 8 Pro tablets to its field workers to help with that transition.
“Windows 8 tablets will be used by field operatives to receive and send job information for smart meter installation work.”
“The Toughpad is the ideal device for our large scale smart metering roll-out because it is robust and resilient, yet light and easy to handle. The touch screen makes it easier for our field operatives to capture and input essential data, which will provide innovative options for engaging our customers and providing the best possible experience for them,” EDF Energy’s Niels Roberts stated in an emailed press release to us. He is the Smart Metering Program Director.
Not only does the Toughpad run Windows 8 Pro, but the device also provides the perfect balance between mobility and durability. The device promises numerous benefits over existing PDA devices, including a bigger screen, multi-touch, and long battery life.
The Toughpad tablet with also feature “ZigBee wireless technology” in which both EDF Energy and Panasonic are jointly developing. This will allow for secure connections to smart metering equipment.
EDF Energy field operatives will get their hands on the 10.1 inch 1920×1200 display, high quality HD 720p front web camera as standard and optional 3MP rear camera with double flash capability, powered by Intel’s Core i5-3437U vProTM 3MB cache, 1.9GHz, and comes with 4GB of RAM and 128GB SSD.
For those who didn’t know, smart meters are the next generation of gas and electricity meters that take accurate readings of energy usage. These readings are automatically sent to EDF Energy and consumers receive an accurate energy bill without having to submit meter readings. Smart meters will help consumers gain a better understanding of the energy they use every day, putting them in control of their energy consumption.Further reading: Microsoft, Windows 8