Actually, this is false.
The meter does not tell your appliances ANYTHING. They POLL the meter for current grid status before performing a power intensive operation (spinning up). Once running, they are NEVER told to power down. Even if tols to not spin up, the delay for spinup of a device is capped at 15 minutes.
It's possible that durring a machine wash cycle, you can say finish the wash cycle and the machine drains, but the machine might "pause" waiting for available power to perform a spin up for the spin cycle.
Typical "pauses" are 1-3 minutes, and 70-80% of the time there won't be one at all.
This technology is not about how much power the power plant can produce, it's about LOCAL brownout control. You can't have 400 homes all spin up air conditioners out of 600 in the same 1 minute block of time without making upstream adjustments in power generation and delivery (or experiencijng brownouts). However, by delaying some of them 1 minute, some 2, some 3, etc, the PEAK, short duration draw is normalized, and the grid does not need to react to changes in power except gradually throughout hot, cold, day, and night periods of the day. This is slow-spin power generation, and eliminates heavy reliance on quick spin dirty power generation systems that handle brownout mitigation.
In essence, instead of controlling power from the plant to regions of the city, now the local regions control their own power and make upstream requests as needed for constant power draw, and no longer to handle 3-15 second spikes in power delivery needs.
This system is cheaper for the power company to operate, provides cleaner energy from constant on power generators, and eliminates localized brownouts.
Suchg a system is also critical in power outage scenarios, where hundreds of homes all come on line concurrently after a main line outage. now, lights come on quick, maybe stoves too. Small appliances are also available instantly. AC's can typically wait, as a 5 minute delay in AC spin up typically means less than 0.5 degrees in variance max. Your refrigerator is likely one of the least imprtant appliances in the house, as is the water heater (in terms of thermal loss for extended periods). As power is returned to the community gradually, over 5-10 minutes everything comes back oin, as opposed to all at once, which is a huge burden for switching stations and transformers.