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Smart prepaid to resolve issue of unpaid water bills

Prepaid meters will help household consumers to control water consumption on an hourly, daily, and monthly basis
Prepaid meters will help household consumers to control water consumption on an hourly, daily, and monthly basis

Muscat: The new smart prepaid meter introduced by Nama Water Services will help maintain healthy relationships between the landlords and tenants and all new buildings or apartments will be encouraged to use them, said a senior official of Nama Water Services.

The prepaid system will also eliminate the issue of accumulating debt, particularly for commercial accounts and rental properties as landlords can ensure tenants are responsible for their water usage, preventing unpaid bills.

Speaking to the Observer, Ahmed al Harthy, CEO of Commercial Services, Nama Water Services, said: "Prepaid meters will have the same tariff as the postpaid ones and will help landlords to have a good relationship with the tenants when it comes to controlling the water consumption and issues related to payment of water bills."

These meters will help household consumers to control water consumption on an hourly, daily, and monthly basis. Devices will be provided free with installation for the first time. Using Internet of Things (IoT) technology, prepaid water meters offer a smarter way to manage water consumption.

These meters connect to the utility company's subscriber system via satellite, transmitting hourly updates on key data points. This includes both the amount of water used and the remaining balance from your prepaid credit.

Meanwhile, Qais al Zakwani, Qais al Zakwani, CEO of Nama Water Services, said, "Rigorous testing ensured a smooth activation process and a positive subscriber experience for this service, which aligns with Nama Water Services' commitment to continuous development and improved offerings within this vital industry.”

The meters will provide real-time usage data, allowing customers to monitor and control their water consumption. Existing customers may request the change at no additional cost, while new connection requests will only incur standard connection fees. The prepaid meter system seamlessly integrates with the Nama Water Services mobile app and the company's online portal.

This allows customers to manage their prepaid meters entirely electronically, including requesting installation, replacing existing meters, checking remaining credit, monitoring water consumption, and even switching back to traditional billing if desired by changing the settings through the mobile app or the e-portal.

Subscribers may top up their prepaid water meters with amounts ranging from RO 5 (minimum) to RO 100 (maximum) for residential accounts and from RO 10 to RO 500 for commercial accounts. The service automatically resumes upon recharge after a low balance disconnection. To ensure timely top-ups, the smart meter system sends SMS alerts to users approaching a low balance threshold, set at 3 cubic metres (approximately 660 gallons). Users can monitor their remaining credit and water usage either directly on the meter's display or through the Nama Water Services app.

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