Utility spending on GIS tools and services to touch $3.7 billion by 2017

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Utility spending on GIS tools and services to touch $3.7 billion by 2017

Greentech Lead Asia: Utility spending on GIS services,
software, and tools will reach $3.7 billion in 2017. The adoption of smart grid
technologies by electric utilities will drive the increasing investment in GIS
and related applications.

“The smart grid has energized electric utilities to think
creatively about how to improve the delivery of electrical power and the
business and workflow processes that enable it. As the deployment of
intelligent field equipment, particularly advanced metering infrastructure, has
surged, the applications leveraging this infrastructure are increasingly
dependent on GIS-based data for critical real-time performance,” said Bob Gohn,
vice president, Pike Research.

The geographic information system (GIS) is the
foundational technology linking every activity of an electric utility –
including design and construction, asset management, workforce management,
outage management, and, increasingly, real-time grid operations.

According to Pike Research, there are eight core
GIS-related utility applications in use or nearing deployment, and they fit
into three categories of market maturity: applications already adopted by a
majority of utilities, including automated mapping and facilities management,
back office, and plant and facility design and construction systems;
applications experiencing wide-spread adoption over the next few years, such as
asset, mobile workforce, and outage management; and newly emerging
GIS-integrated tools, such as advanced distribution management and advanced
metering infrastructure.

The challenges to the effective adoption and use of these
systems in the electric utility market involve data complexity and quality,
mobile workforce requirements, loss of existing GIS knowledge and skills
through retirement, organizational structure, and the GIS vendor ecosystem.

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