Just read an interesting article in computing magazine. The UK electricity suppliers are set to roll out nationally smart meters which allow you greater choice in the type of electricity supply you purchase. For example, you could choose a plan based around your lifestyle where you require cheaper electricity at certain times of the day as opposed to being dictated to. So night shift workers may be able to take advantage of cheaper electricity during the day when they are actually in as opposed to at night when they are not.
This is an important step as it then allows the utility operators to "blend" their usage patterns better and not have to rely on "extensive carbon-heavy peak load generation" - their words not mine :-)
The government wants this type of service in place by 2010 - to allow operators to meet their green objectives.
If a utility can be seen to offer differentiated services on something as mundane as electricity I'm sure we will see other service industries take up the mantle. We are already used to broadband being differentiated by usage / use but what will come next and how will this impact the way we manage our lives / lifestyles going forward. Interesting times.....