PayGo Electric today announced a pilot program with Georgia Power to study the commercial feasibility of providing the option of a prepaid electric service to the company’s existing and future customers.
PayGo’s patent-pending technology embeds logic in the communications modules, the smart meter, or the system servers which can alert both the customer and the utility of the need to add credit to a customer’s account for continued electric service. The process is similar to the wireless market where 20 percent of consumers use prepaid payment options. The system can leverage a utility’s existing assets while it includes a nationwide payment processing platform enabling utilities to use existing, as well as new payment methods for their customers. This new technology allows customers to be continuously informed of their account status and enables them to pay for their electricity on a schedule which best fits their needs.
Mobile devices and banking services have increased consumer expectations for real-time information. Unlike previous prepayment systems which have been given high satisfaction ratings by consumers in other states and countries, there are no trips required outside of the home to purchase additional electricity.
With PayGo, customers can contact the utility to “top up” their account directly with a mobile device, make online payments, recharge at various retail outlets, or utilize a number of additional payment methods. The PayGo solution calculates the consumer’s actual consumption at the meter and alerts customers real-time as they reach predetermined spending levels.
“It is an honor to collaborate on such a key consumer-enabling technology with the national leader in quality customer experience and innovation,” said PayGo partner David Elve. “We believe providing customers with an option of prepaid electric service will enable Georgia Power to improve consumer satisfaction through increased consumer control over their consumption and improved energy efficiency, while it provides them with additional payment options… similar to their cell phone plans.”
“Georgia Power’s top priority is to provide additional value to our customers,” said Michael Garrett, customer service operations manager, Georgia Power. “We are excited to pilot this ‘pay as you go’ system and determine how it may best benefit our customers.”
PayGo is a smart grid software and service provider that enables the rapid provisioning of smart grid “Apps” including pay as you go electric service from utilities to their customers. With industry studies suggesting energy savings exceeding 10% by prepaid electric participants, PayGo’s mission is one that couples sustainability with quantifiable, sustained cost savings for utilities and control for their consumers. The Company’s integrated settlement and payment processing network also enables plug-in electrical vehicle programs. More information is available at the Company’s website, www.paygoelectric.com.