Apps are a central part of the electric vehicle experience, helping to identify charging points, facilitating charging and linking drivers and their cars day to day. The app connected to the vehicle commonly offered by manufacturers should be a ’ must have’, but what other apps should EV drivers consider? Here are real-world experience suggestions;
- ZapMaps is an excellent way of identifying nearby charger points, mapping, showing charger speed and reviews, and facilitating payment at some point, or as they say, Search, Plan Pay. UK-based ZapMap also has a handy website. The basic app is free, but it costs £2.99 per month to upgrade to ‘Premium, ' which removes the ads and brings Apple CarPlay and Android Auto functionality for free.
- ChargePoint – the ChargePoint app provides access to one of the largest charging networks globally, enabling users to find, start, and pay for charging sessions at charging points ‘affiliated’ with ChargePoint. ChargePoint. To make full use of the app, users must get a ChargePoint card and provide their credit card details to pay for their charging. It is helpful in the UK and Europe, where many chargers can require different, charger-specific RFID cards. Easy to use, with filters that narrow down the chargers shown to those that fit your car. With the point chosen, it sends the location to Google or Apple Maps and integrates with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Free with free RFID card
- Chargemap – similar to ChargePoint, a European-based app that helps EV drivers find charging stations, including real-time status updates and user reviews. Again, you must order a Chargemap card to use the service; don’t leave this until the last minute. The cards come from the Netherlands! One fundamental shortcoming from our experience is that while plenty of chargers are listed, the Chargemap RFID card did not seem to work at that many.
- Octopus Electroverse - part of energy company Octopus, more than 651,325 EV chargers work with Electroverse, and it is free. Users can choose the app or a free RFID card to connect to the chargers, and there are no additional fees or subscriptions. Extra 5% - 8% discounts are available for people using Octopus for their home energy supply. The app integrates with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and shows chargepoints not on the Electroverse network, which can be helpful.
- ChargePlace Scotland – Scotland has a well-developed EV charging infrastructure created by the Government and Councils, but to make the most of it the Chargeplace Scotland you will need the app and order the RFID card – the network is good, and then the card can be invaluable for some of those quieter locations where other commercial charger providers don't go currently, and one final benefit, some of their chargers are still free.