Itron, Landis+Gyr team up on smart grid integration

Meter maker Itron and energy management outfit Landis+Gyr will integrate their technologies to make it easier for utility companies shopping for a smart grid solution.

Many moons ago, we wrote here on SmartPlanet that in a down economy, we're more likely to see smart grid companies partner with, rather than acquire, each other to grow business.

The latest example of that was announced today: meter maker Itron and energy management outfit Landis+Gyr will integrate their respective technologies to "expand the choices" offered to utility companies in the market for a smart grid solution.

Simply: hardware, meet software.

The nitty gritty of the deal involves the development of integrated communications, compatible with both Landis+Gyr's Gridstream and Itron's OpenWay systems. For example, Landis+Gyr is building a Gridstream RF communications module for Itron’s CENTRON II meter; meanwhile, Itron is bringing its OpenWay communications module to the Landis+Gyr Focus AX-SD meter.

The name of the game is called interoperability, and multi-vendor deals like this help utilities avoid suffering from analysis paralysis -- that is, choosing products from among the dozens out there today (and making sure they all work together).

The companies say they will announce product availability "before the end of this year" -- right about the time that Toshiba's $2.3 billion acquisition of Landis+Gyr is finalized.

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com