The number of utilities companies that have implemented smart-grid technology has increased 25pc over the past year, the Microsoft/OSIsoft Worldwide Utility Industry Survey 2012 suggests.
The survey also shows that 28pc of companies surveyed are in the planning phase, but 24pc still have not started adopting any smart-grid technology. However, 63pc of survey participants expect their budgets for these technologies to increase over the next two or three years.
The survey polled 216 professionals within electric, gas and water utility industries around the world and highlights the challenges utilities face as they move from planning to actual smart-grid implementation.
Nearly 20pc of the companies surveyed said technical issues kept them from moving forward, which was a larger group than in last year’s survey.
“This year’s survey shows that more and more utilities companies are adding new devices to the grid and incorporating new data sets into their operational capabilities,” said Jon C Arnold, managing director for the Worldwide Power and Utilities Industry at Microsoft and a member of the Smart Grid Advisory Committee to the US National Institute of Standards and Technology.
“However, many of these same organisations are encountering significant interoperability and integration challenges."
The survey also indicated that 72pc of respondents do not have an enterprise-wide scalable architecture in place to support current and future smart-grid deployments.