A smart meter is usually an electronic device that records consumption of electric energy in intervals of an hour or less. It communicates that information at least daily back to the utility for monitoring and billing.
Smart meters enable two-way communication between the meter and the central system. Unlike home energy monitors, smart meters can gather data for remote reporting. Such an advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) differs from traditional automatic meter reading (AMR) in that it enables two-way communications with the meter.