Fastned, the European fast charging company, has recently released a major app update that makes it easier for electric vehicle (EV) drivers to use the Autocharge feature for the very first time.
With Autocharge, all EV drivers need to do to charge is connect the charger to the vehicle and the charging process will start automatically.
Many EV drivers are accustomed to several steps that precede connecting the charger plug into the car in order to start charging. These might include for instance swiping an RFID card, selecting a connector and pressing a start button. There are even more cumbersome methods like scanning QR codes for online payment, and downloading and registering for a new app. By contrast, Autocharge allows EV drivers to charge their vehicle simply by connecting the charging cable to the vehicle, without having to follow any steps on the charger beforehand.
With the latest update, the Fastned app’s Autocharge activation experience, i.e. the steps taken by users to set up Autocharge for the first time, has improved, making it easier than ever to be activated. Users with a vehicle that supports Autocharge will see the option to set up Autocharge appear during a charging session that was started with the app. Users can activate Autocharge with just a tap – a considerably simpler process compared to other providers and the previous app version.
The app update also includes a new, simple (temporary) deactivation and reactivation of the Autocharge feature. Additionally, the security has been increased by encrypting the data used for identification of the vehicle, which is also a an improvement for protecting the customer’s privacy. The new update is available now for all Fastned customers.
Autocharge isn’t a new technology. Back in 2016, Fastned and charger manufacturer ABB saw the need for making charging as simple as possible. So they teamed up to develop Autocharge. After almost a year of development and testing, Fastned announced the roll-out of Autocharge for its customers in October 2017. The technology quickly proved to be successful: in the one-year span, from Q4-2021 until Q3-2022, close to 150K Autocharge sessions had already been started by Fastned customers. Furthermore, several other charging networks in Europe and even worldwide have successfully implemented Autocharge since the technology is open for anyone to adopt.
“Fastned is the first company in the world to give the EV-driver the easiest way to activate Autocharge for their vehicle, simply through the Fastned app. This year marks Autocharge’s 5th anniversary, so this update feels to us like a celebration” said Robin Wouters, Director Product & Engineering at Fastned. “This significant improvement is part of Fastned’s goal to always provide customers with the best customer experience.”