On the 10th March 2014, Ed Davey the energy minister announced that all energy firms are to add QR codes to their bills. This will help consumers to be able to easily compare their bills on comparison websites to ensure they are getting the best possible deal.
A QR code is a square consisting of different sized black and white squares. They are usually scanned by smart phones or tablets using the camera feature, which then displays information on the device. So in this scenario, the customers billing information will be stored on the QR code.
The government plans will involve a smart phone app, which when customers swipe over an energy bill, it will be able to read the data such as the consumption used and also the tariff. This data will then automatically be uploaded to price comparison websites, to enable consumers to look at deals from other suppliers and see if they can get a better deal.
Energy companies in the past have not wanted to include the QR codes on the bills they send to consumers, as it could cause them to lose customers. However, the government want to change the energy licences so that it is a requirement to have the QR codes placed on bills.
Ed Davey the energy minister stated, “We’re determined to make energy markets work better for consumers – and despite all the evidence showing that QR codes on bills would make a real difference to people, energy companies still have done anything about it”.
A consultation will take place until the 21st April. This will be used to gain the views and the possible contribution towards the development of the app, from across the industry.