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Smart-grid analytics to be $4 billion industry

Smart Grid software and data services market to reach annual revenue of $4.2 billion worldwide by 2015, says research analyst.

Smart-grid data analytics services will generate $4.2 billion in annual revenue by 2015, according to a report released today by Pike Research.

The report asserts that converting the amassment of raw data collected from smart meters into useful information, and in real-time, is a utility's goal from day one of smart-grid deployment. The information garnered from data analytics has an immediate and direct impact on how a utility operates as a company, according to Pike Research.

"[By] utilizing smart-grid data analytics tools and related services, utilities will be able to gain better insights into their customers' energy consumption behavior to serve them more effectively, manage billing issues, communicate about outages, and to collaborate with them to foster energy conservation and reduce peak demand," said the report.

It's no surprise then that smart-grid software and services would grow as smart-grid deployment grows worldwide.

As of 2010, the smart-grid software and services industry was still new and small, with a worldwide revenue of just $356 million. But stalwarts of data analytics services and small niche firms alike are increasing their services and gaining more clients, according to Pike Research.

Famed companies like Accenture, Hewlett-Packard, IBM, Microsoft, Oracle, SAP, Siemens, and Teradata are all ramping up in this area.

But the space, which Pike Research contends is competitive and wide open to new players, is also occupied by specialty data analytics companies offering smart-meter data management almost exclusively.

Those companies include Aclara Software, Ecologic Analytics, eMeter, Itron, Olameter, and NorthStar Utilities, according to Pike Research.

The analysis follows an ABI Research report released in July that predicted a total of $41 billion will be spent on smart-grid transmission and distribution infrastructure, and another $4.8 billion will be spent to install smart meters in homes. Pike Research also predicted in a September report that a total of $4.3 billion will be spent on the installation, maintenance, and management services for smart grids by 2015.