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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
See Electrek, the above story was just posted today. The author pans GM's efforts. I'm not sure how this positively or negatively affects the average Bolt owener. Any thoughts from forum members?
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
There was also a similar story on InsideEVs without the editorial comment. Maybe a minor positive in terms of dealing with all the different charging providers? I have 6 apps on my phone for different providers.
 

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I'm filing this under "meh" for now. As much as I like and rely on EVgo, it seems like a major mistake to leave out a network like Electrify America.

Also, I'd prefer to see GM partner with PlugShare, both for the integration PlugShare's maps and to commission Recargo to build about 100 sites similar to Prunedale in strategic locations around the country. In exchange, GM would get exclusive advertising rights for GM products on all of the digital displays (like Volta does with L2 AC).
 

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I think it鈥檚 great. I鈥檓 probably the only one here whom all apps/keypass/mychevy work great and use them a lot so having the added bonus of having live network status would be a nice add-on 鈥渁 la tesla鈥.

I would also like PlugShare to be available in CarPlay but I don鈥檛 have my hopes up for that one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I'm filing this under "meh" for now. As much as I like and rely on EVgo, it seems like a major mistake to leave out a network like Electrify America.

Also, I'd prefer to see GM partner with PlugShare, both for the integration PlugShare's maps and to commission Recargo to build about 100 sites similar to Prunedale in strategic locations around the country. In exchange, GM would get exclusive advertising rights for GM products on all of the digital displays (like Volta does with L2 AC).
Given the recent announcement of the Ford and Volkswagen alliance, it would seem unlikely that Electrify America will establish a tie with GM. One could speculate that an alliance of Electrify America (and maybe others) would be more likely to occur with Ford/Volkswagen. Perhaps, rather than going the Tesla route of building their own charging stations, the legacy automakers will establish alliances with charging providers to do exactly what you suggested that GM do with PlugShare (market their products).

Really though, so much of this seems speculative, who really knows all the underlying motivations that lead to these decisions.
 

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Here's a link to the story on Electrek and on Inside EVs.
I agree that the announcement leaves a lot of questions as to exactly how the combined charging networks will be accessed, but I have to disagree about GM needing to build out a charging network on their own. I just can鈥檛 see each manufacturer setting up competing charging networks, that would only retard EV acceptance, not accelerate it.

Right now nobody knows how the charging network will develop over the next decade, but my money is on an increasingly standardized and consolidated industry with readily available public access, not unlike pulling into a gas station. Nobody should need to carry a wallet full of cards or a phone full of apps to charge when out on the road.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I agree that the announcement leaves a lot of questions as to exactly how the combined charging networks will be accessed, but I have to disagree about GM needing to build out a charging network on their own. I just can鈥檛 see each manufacturer setting up competing charging networks, that would only retard EV acceptance, not accelerate it.

Right now nobody knows how the charging network will develop over the next decade, but my money is on an increasingly standardized and consolidated industry with readily available public access, not unlike pulling into a gas station. Nobody should need to carry a wallet full of cards or a phone full of apps to charge when out on the road.
Perhaps it will eventually occur, as you describe. As I read it, GM is not interested in its own charging network. I view the GM/EVgo/Chargepoint/Greenlots alliance as part of their marketing strategy.

I'm totally in agreement with you about wanting a more "standardized and consolidated industry..." and being able to forego all the cards/apps. It's just that news events don't suggest that right away. For instance, I ran across an article in Bloomberg News about VW's efforts in China after my recent post. Here is the link:

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/arti...nture-for-charging-electric-cars?srnd=premium

It reports that VW is setting up a network of chargers in China. There is no reason why these multinational corporations would not do the same in the U.S.
 

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Given the recent announcement of the Ford and Volkswagen alliance, it would seem unlikely that Electrify America will establish a tie with GM. One could speculate that an alliance of Electrify America (and maybe others) would be more likely to occur with Ford/Volkswagen. Perhaps, rather than going the Tesla route of building their own charging stations, the legacy automakers will establish alliances with charging providers to do exactly what you suggested that GM do with PlugShare (market their products).

Really though, so much of this seems speculative, who really knows all the underlying motivations that lead to these decisions.
It's possible. As long as EV owners aren't negatively affected (i.e., these won't be walled gardens), I'm fine with it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thinking about this further, GM or other legacy automakers might just purchase a Plugshare or ChargeHub to build out their platform. How many times have an Apple or Facebook purchased a startup to make their product more attractive and marketable? As GM and other auto companies transition to EVs over the next few years and develop their marketing strategy, this might start happening more often. It will be interesting to watch as it develops.
 

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Thinking about this further, GM or other legacy automakers might just purchase a Plugshare or ChargeHub to build out their platform. How many times have an Apple or Facebook purchased a startup to make their product more attractive and marketable? As GM and other auto companies transition to EVs over the next few years and develop their marketing strategy, this might start happening more often. It will be interesting to watch as it develops.
I doubt any of the manufactures would buy a charging network, but they sure could create a partnership and use it for marketing.

This article from January 2019 issue of SAE Automotive Engineering by Sam Abuelsamid, Senior Analyst Navigant Research, about the Tesla model of "free" charging.

================
The not-so-hidden cost of 鈥渇ree鈥

There is no such thing as a free lunch, as
the old truism goes. For more than a
century, the auto industry business model
has been to sell it and forget it. Once
you drove off the lot in that shiny new machine,
you were on your own, aside from warranty repairs
for defects or compliance recalls.
If you wanted to upgrade the functionality of
your vehicle or even put fuel in to operate it, you
paid out of pocket. Then Tesla seemed to turn
that model on its head with free battery charging
via its Supercharger network, and over-theair
(OTA) software updates.
But there was a problem with this new approach.
Tesla has been notoriously bad at operating
profitably and 鈥渇ree鈥 energy and functional
updates cost money. When you are trying to
grow a self-sustaining business, giving stuff
away on cars at lower price points quickly becomes
incompatible. Thus, free electrons and
connections are going away at Tesla.
The company is shifting away from some of
the costly offerings that were more easily absorbed
in higher-priced cars and a smaller fleet.
Prior to the Model 3 launch, Tesla offered all customers
free access to its high-speed
Supercharger network for the life of the vehicle.
As the number of drivers wanting access to
Superchargers has swelled, the company has
adopted a pay model for charging, similar to the
more limited plans offered by Nissan and Audi.
OTA updates have seemed like a great way
to save money by avoiding costly dealer visits
for non-hardware fixes. But they too have
costs. Tesla formerly pushed new software to
all vehicles by whatever connectivity was available,
either cellular or WiFi. Every Tesla built
since the Model S launched has had a built-in
data modem.
For six years, Tesla didn鈥檛 charge for this connectivity.
And the company still provides basic
low-bandwidth connectivity for functions such
as battery management as part of the purchase
price, as most automakers do. However, dataintensive
functions like downloading firmware or
map updates now require $100 per year premium
connectivity or else either a WiFi connection
or service visit.
As a result, some customers have been finding
they haven鈥檛 received the latest AutoPilot enhancements
because they may not have access
to a good wireless connection if they park on
the street or in an apartment garage.
This doesn鈥檛 even factor in the cost of the
ongoing development of the software, maps
and even hardware upgrades that Tesla has
promised its customers. Those customers will
increasingly find themselves having to pay out
of pocket to maintain or improve functionality
in their vehicles.
This is a sign of things to come, as the industry
moves toward greater reliance on connectivity
and automation. Automated driving will
require fresh high-definition maps on an ongoing
basis in order to function properly. As the
technology matures, the overall system will
need functional updates as well as fixes for security
vulnerabilities that may put these vehicles
at risk.
Ongoing development of vehicles that are
already in service will no longer be a nice-tohave
option. This will be a mandatory process
that has significant costs associated with it and
customers will have to pay. Affordability of new
vehicles is increasingly a thorny problem. It will
only get worse if automakers try to bundle in
the cost of updates upfront. Customers also
won鈥檛 be happy if they incur a mandatory subscription
fee when they buy a car.
The other option is to not sell these vehicles
at all, but only make them available through mobility
services where the support costs can be
hidden in the fare charged for those services.
This, perhaps more than anything else including
liability concerns, is why only very expensive
premium vehicles are likely to be sold with fully
automated driving capability.
The rest of us will be using automated vehicles
owned and operated by a fleet somewhere
on demand.
================

Edit - adding image of original article...
 

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To the previous two posts.
I also don't see automakers having any direct involvement with the charging networks. Tesla's is unique in that they had no choice.







The second post makes valid points especially concerning the future tech heavy features of automobiles. It's my opinion that software will become the brands identity much like engines are now. The engine R&D departments are the last standing internal source of pride for most manufacturers. Not much to show off with an electric motor or pouch cell but robust, elegantly designed and bug free software will be a bragging point.
Where I take a slight turn in your reasoning is how the cost of this perpetual connectivity will be marketed. I think it would be a mistake to separate the Wi-Fi into an annual fee. IMO, it should be baked into the purchase price. This over time will settle in as a marketing benefit as standard features go head to head. All manufacturers will require it so they all can determine how best to pass the cost along. In my Leaf, it has that connectivity and even though Nissan has threatened to eventually charge for it, (I think Tesla also has this option), they still haven't. Whether they think the good will has value and how much is another question only they know the answer to.
 

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I was told by another Bolt owner, that the Chevrolet logo charge point card that came in your glove box with a new purchased vehicle provides free charging. I鈥檓 unable to validate that can you?
It didn't provide free charging for me. It does work, but you have to connect it to a ChargePoint account that you set up.
 

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I was told by another Bolt owner, that the Chevrolet logo charge point card that came in your glove box with a new purchased vehicle provides free charging. I鈥檓 unable to validate that can you?
You would go on Chargepoint site to create an acct and input the RFID card to link it to your account. Price for charging is set by the station owners, some offer free and others charge.
 

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I was told by another Bolt owner, that the Chevrolet logo charge point card that came in your glove box with a new purchased vehicle provides free charging. I鈥檓 unable to validate that can you?
Have never heard that before. It's just like any other ChargePoint card that you can add to your ChargePoint account.

P7wang is 100% correct. It provides me free charging at my work since it's free there but that's the case with my 2 other CP cards or starting sessions w/my Apple Watch or phone.
 
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