Water Utility Mobile Application For Meter Reading: Android Based

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Emmanuel Nyirenda
Christopher Chembe


Water utility companies have a billing process which involves reading the meter as well as knowing the consumption of its customers. The major challenge faced by water utilities in Zambia is inaccurate customer billing. Affecting hugely this inaccurate customer billing is the manual meter reading process. For most water utilities in Zambia meter reading is a very complex task. The current method for meter reading uses manual work of reading the meter and updating details of the customers. The readings are maintained in a record book and due to manual processing of data there are possibilities of generating an incorrect bill. This process cause extra work load on person who is capturing meter readings. The manual process is associated with the following challenges; transfer errors, poor handwriting, manipulation of figures, lack of analysis of readings, low productivity, time pressure, increase in non-revenue water and meter readers not visiting the property. The other problem with manual meter reading is that both the customer and the water utility company have challenges in monitoring and analyzing of consumption trends for customers and it is very difficult to monitor meter readers in the field. Although technologically advanced solutions exist, most water utilities in Zambia have no budget for them. The proposed model comprised of the android mobile application for capturing readings in the field and the web application for analysing readings and monitoring of field workers in real time. A usability test was undertaken consisting of 36 respondents which comprised of 75% meter readers and 25% customers. The results obtained from the mobile application framework, showed that the capturing, uploading, monitoring and analysis of readings were very good for the users and customers who participated in the study. Three user experience areas were used to undertake the survey namely, perceived ease-of-use, perceived flexibility and perceived information accuracy. With the android and web application customers are also able to take their own readings and view graphical usage at any time anywhere.


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How to Cite
Nyirenda, E., & Chembe, C. (2019). Water Utility Mobile Application For Meter Reading: Android Based. Zambia ICT Journal, 3(2), 19–30. https://doi.org/10.33260/zictjournal.v3i2.85
Author Biography

Christopher Chembe, Mulungushi University

Department of Computer Science and IT