Last month I did a small questionnaire on LinkedIn asking my network: What are the most important criteria for choosing a charge solution in a communal charging garage or parking space? I only had 4 options to choose from per the LinkedIn system:
1. Price HW
2. Payment solution
3. HW independence
4. Load balancing and other features.
In the end price tied with HW independence for the first place. An interesting observation is that all who voted for HW independence are Norwegian, whereas none who voted for price is. In stead of analysing this, I would rather focus on how close this vote was, only a few votes were the difference between the tied first place and last.
It seems to me that any solution for EV infrastructure need to be covering all these 4 criteria to have a broad appeal:
• Have a low price but be tied to only one HW supplier and with few features and many of your potential customers will disappear.
• Have a great feature set and good payment solutions but favour only a few HW suppliers and you may see a smaller total market for your services.
• And so, on.
Thankfully, there is some standards you can look for to help you to HW independence: OCPP has become broadly accepted by HW supplier to help interoperability. The question you should ask is this: Do the SW also give you this freedom? If the SW is part of the HW deal and tied to the supplier, how free will you be to choose different HW next time you need to expand your charging infrastructure?
Today, EV adoption is at double- and triple-digit growth, meaning that the 20 chargers you put in place today, may very well be 40 next year. If your HW supplier then has delivery issues, has launched a new line of chargers that are more expensive or are HW incompatible with the infrastructure you use today, will your SW constrict your choices?
Luckily, there are options that give you the flexibility you need to make choices without locking yourself in. Give us a call and we can discuss these choices with you.