The key point is in the last paragraph - to save on labor costs. Whilst consumers will have to pay for installation (short term costs), expect power companies to make long term profits from sacking meter staff and some support staff. More for the multinationals, less for the consumer.
The problem is possible biological effects, if the meters use wireless communications to store or report usage.
Blog Doing Math in FPGAs Tom Burke 12 comments For a recent project, I explored doing "real" (that is, non-integer) math on a Spartan 3 FPGA. FPGAs, by their nature, do integer math. That is, there's no floating-point ...