There are three primary types of meters for residential and small business customers:
These are the old ones that don't store the data they measure: instead, their dials or digits keep rotating and every three months someone will record the reading. You'll therefore only see two numbers on your bill: a start read and an end read.
These meters measure data at set time intervals, such as 7-9am and 5-8pm for 'peak'. They aren't remotely read, meaning every three months someone will wander around and get the data. They often do this by inserting a probe into the meter to download all the figures.
If you have an interval meter you may see that your start reading each quarter is zero. That's the way some of these things roll but we're looking at how we can provide proper start and end reads instead.
These meters do everything an interval data does and have the ability to transmit the data at set time intervals. In many cases this data is sent each day and normally via a network that doesn't rely on wifi in the property.
Smart meters can also be disconnected and reconnected remotely in many cases, and this can be extremely useful when you're moving into or out of a property.