Nelson County, VA
We got a visit the other day from a nice guy at CVEC  saying he was here to replace the electric meter with a new one. “In addition to annual visual reads by a serviceman, CVEC has a regular schedule for retrieving and testing meters to verify their accuracy. When we retrieve a meter in the field for testing, we leave a new or a reconditioned meter. Your meter is new as are the others being installed since it is now more economical to replace a meter than to recondition one,” says Greg Kelly with Central Virginia Electric headquartered in Arrington, VA.
One of the curiosities we had is whether or not the replacement meter was the newer smart meter variety.
Via Wiki: 
A smart meter is usually an electrical meter that records consumption of electric energy in intervals of an hour or less and communicates that information at least daily back to the utility for monitoring and billing purposes. Smart meters enable two-way communication between the meter and the central system. Unlike home energy monitors, smart meters can gather data for remote reporting. Such an advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) differs from traditional automatic meter reading (AMR) in that it enables two-way communications with the meter.
“The meter does not have the capability of interacting with internal household circuits or appliances and has no wireless communications component. The PLC module is fairly simple and either transmits a meter reading or it doesn’t. A firmware upgrade would not change or increase the meters functional capability,” Greg continued.
“This is part of our normal system maintenance, just like replacing old poles and wires. No one makes mechanical meters any more. Shame really, as they were very sturdy,” CVEC’s CEO Gary Wood added in an email to us.
So if you see the new digital meter being installed at your place, there’s the answer!
Thanks to CVEC for giving us the scoop and all of the details!