Pinned Solved

Why are OVO disabling the real-time smart usage features!?



Show first post

74 replies

Userlevel 3
Hi @chrissfoot,

Your question about re-using the smart gateways is an interesting one. I'm investigating - I'll respond here when I have a definitive answer.

Thanks

Cassie


Hi @Cassie_OVO, any news on repurposing our smart gateways?
Userlevel 2
Hi @chrissfoot,

Yes, I’ve investigated and unfortunately we can’t provide you access to your smart gateway. I’m assuming you have good tech knowledge if you’re interested in doing this, so I won’t hold back on the technical detail!

Before a CAD can be connected to our smart metering network, the hardware-firmware combination of the device has to be tested and approved by our smart meter manufacturer, Secure. This is because any device paired to the smart metering network can pose a potential security risk and may affect the functionality of the smart meter.

Changing the endpoint to which your CAD sends data to an endpoint of your own would require an update to the firmware image installed on the CAD. The problem is, once you update the firmware on the device, it would no longer be recognised as an approved CAD by Secure and they would therefore remove it from the smart metering network.

Sorry for the disappointing answer,

Cassie
Userlevel 3
Hi @chrissfoot,

Yes, I’ve investigated and unfortunately we can’t provide you access to your smart gateway. I’m assuming you have good tech knowledge if you’re interested in doing this, so I won’t hold back on the technical detail!

Before a CAD can be connected to our smart metering network, the hardware-firmware combination of the device has to be tested and approved by our smart meter manufacturer, Secure. This is because any device paired to the smart metering network can pose a potential security risk and may affect the functionality of the smart meter.

Changing the endpoint to which your CAD sends data to an endpoint of your own would require an update to the firmware image installed on the CAD. The problem is, once you update the firmware on the device, it would no longer be recognised as an approved CAD by Secure and they would therefore remove it from the smart metering network.

Sorry for the disappointing answer,

Cassie


That is indeed a shame. Most devices like these have settings like this customisable by end users but I can see why this would have been hardcoded into the firmware for security reasons. I actually thought that the HAN was isolated to each smart meter so that security wasn't a major issue but i'm obviously wrong in that interpretation!

Luckily I can work around the issue by having an awesome firewall (Ubiquity USG) which will allow me to override the dns and talk to my own servers but others aren't so fortunate i'm sure.

I really hope there is some solution to allowing smart meters to talk to smart homes soon
Userlevel 7
Badge +3
Times have indeed changed, haven't they @chrissfoot?

The SMETS protocols were devised almost a decade ago. Ofgem's site has technical briefing papers describing the enhanced SMETS2 capabilities dating from 2013/14. It takes a long time to conduct the consultations and pass the necessary legislation.

The world has changed so much in those years, and the security of our Energy Supplies is increasingly threatened by foreign operatives with malign intent.

Only yesterday I had an email exchange with a UK organisation which will shortly oversee Community Trials of new Electricity-Grid monitoring equipment. I thought I had spotted a couple of weak points in the strategy. Fortunately, it seems I was wrong... but I'm still glad I raised it.

As OVO works towards a new platform to handle Live-Usage data compatible with both SMETS1 & SMETS2, and Cassie is asking for volunteers to help "shape the product", I hope those with technical software knowledge, like yourself, can be selected.

It's going to be a tricky balance to maintain flexibility for us customers, whilst simultaneously ensuring there is no back-door for cyber attack.

This time we're also having to test control connections to 3rd-party devices which are themselves prone to hacking. They will have both their own App-interfaces and dedicated remote-controls. Smart washing-machines, deep freezers, storage radiators, home-batteries and EV chargers are all going to hanging off our SMETS2 meters.
Userlevel 1
I am very unhappy with OVO. I have remained with OVO even when prices have been higher because of the provision of this excellent feature. This is a step backwards. Please, can anyone tell me whether there is a supplier who provides similar high granularity reports? Are there any alternatives?
Userlevel 1
QUESTIONS FOR OVO: Is there a competitor that you can recommend that provides a service similar to Smart Gateway, or a competitor who allows access to Smart Meter data?

I notice that devices are available online that will allow access to Smart Meters. Can Ovo recommend a third-party solution?

Can you replace the Pippit with something better? I threw the Pippit into my employer's WEEE waste bin.
Userlevel 1
Please do not answer my questions above since it is no longer necessary. Without the Smart Gateway service, Ovo has lost its competitive advantage and I have made an application to switch to a much cheaper supplier. Such a shame because I was a great supporter of Ovo and how it was adding value to smart metering. Anyway, it was very very good while it lasted.
Userlevel 7
Badge +3
Your observations are still valued, @Sterling.

If you feel able to, would you please stay as a Forum Member and comment on
  • whatever OVO are rolling out by way of a new usage product
  • third-party usage metering alternatives
  • what gets released as SMETS2 becomes available

Thanks
Userlevel 1
Your observations are still valued, @Sterling.

If you feel able to, would you please stay as a Forum Member and comment on
  • whatever OVO are rolling out by way of a new usage product
  • third-party usage metering alternatives
  • what gets released as SMETS2 becomes available

Thanks


Thank you, Transparent. I am sure that there is far more that can be done with smart metering and automation to achieve energy efficiencies. I will continue to look in with interest. For now, Ovo appears to have made a cost decision not to invest in Smart Gateway. Perhaps another energy supplier will take over where Ovo left off. Apart from customer service, there is little to differentiate energy suppliers and I really thought that Ovo was doing something special.
Looking at the Usage information under My Ovo on the website I get the raw usage in kWh, but not the price information. Why is this?
Userlevel 3
Luckily I can work around the issue by having an awesome firewall (Ubiquity USG) which will allow me to override the dns and talk to my own servers but others aren't so fortunate i'm sure.

I really hope there is some solution to allowing smart meters to talk to smart homes soon


This is true, it appears that the Chameleon IHD doesn't work with self-signed SSL certs, and doesn't fall back to HTTP to send data, so I'm unable to pull anything from this as yet...
Userlevel 1
Nearly three months ago - following the demise of the Smart Usage facility - OVO made the following statement:-

"Rather than provide a poor service which results in a poor customer experience and customer contact - we’re going to stop providing the features to focus on other technology that will provide a better customer experience."

Has anybody seen (or heard of) any sign of a "better customer experience"?
Userlevel 7
Badge +2
There won't be much change to these online services since that update, @BazPraz - we've got a small number of customers trialing our new platform, and the greater roll out is taking longer then expected. But just watch this space. If you've got a smart meter fitted, there's some great new features heading your way! 🆒
But just watch this space. If you've got a smart meter fitted, there's some great new features heading your way! 🆒

But when? and does "great new features" include API access to our usage data?
Userlevel 7
Badge +2
But when? and does "great new features" include API access to our usage data?

When depends on how well these early trials go. I'm sorry I can't be more specific. As for live API access, your best bet is to sign up to take part in future trials for this: https://forum.ovoenergy.com/understanding-your-smart-meter-65/smart-meter-live-usage-api-58
When depends on how well these early trials go. I'm sorry I can't be more specific. As for live API access, your best bet is to sign up to take part in future trials for this: https://forum.ovoenergy.com/understanding-your-smart-meter-65/smart-meter-live-usage-api-58

Already done that and sent you a DM / PM (depending on how you look at them) 😉
For quite a while now, I have not been able to see today's data as it is being used. I can see data for any day/week/month before today but not today (both Gas and Electric) I thought that the idea of a smart meter was so that we could see what is happening and make changes if needed, but obviously I cannot do this. Does anyone know if there a fault somewhere ?
Userlevel 6
Badge
Hey @Maxjonz - I've moved your post over here where you can find more information about the issue you've mentioned.
Userlevel 1
OVO had been taking the lead in smart metering but removed the very successful Smart Gateway functionality with little notice to its customers. Hopefully, an OVO competitor will move into this space.
Userlevel 7
Badge +3
Hi @Maxjonz Sorry I've only just spotted your comment.

As far as I know, DCC only poll your Smart Meters once each day to collect the usage data. Someone else posted on the Forum a few months ago to say that this was just after midnight, but I can't remember how they had calculated that!

So you'll only be able to view yesterday's data on OVO's website. The current day's data is visible only on your IHD.

At some point this will probably change. Most of us will be moving to Demand Side Response, which is a half-hour variable tariff (also known as Time-Of-Use tariff). That means we can take advantage of electricity at lower price-points throughout the day.

Since DCC will need to send such day at intervals during the day, I see no reason why they wouldn't import the latest set of usage data at the same time.

Let me know if you'd like further clarification of the above.
Userlevel 1
Your observations are still valued, @Sterling.

If you feel able to, would you please stay as a Forum Member and comment on
  • whatever OVO are rolling out by way of a new usage product
  • third-party usage metering alternatives
  • what gets released as SMETS2 becomes available
Thanks


I was invited to return here to post on this matter. In the end, I replaced my Smart Gateway functionality on a like-for-like basis. I bought a Smart Gateway type box from Hildebrand and Octopus Energy connected me within minutes of request for API access. It is a great shame that OVO was in the lead and lost interest in this project.
Hi Nancy

Thanks for moving my enquiry over to this location but this area seems to be dominated by API's and the like and remote monitoring from other devices.
I don't need this, I just need the real time data to be available back on the monitoring screen supplied with the smart meter.
I still don't understand why it was switched off?
Is this only OVO who have done this, have other suppliers done the same?

thanks
Alan
Userlevel 6
Badge
Hi @AlanN51,

Sorry I should have pointed you in the direction of this topic ☝🏼

The live usage feature has been disabled, so it won't be possible to display it on your In Home Display device anymore. Unfortunately I don't have an update on whether or not we're making it available again any time soon.
Anything new to report

Reply