Scots Firm Launches App to Tackle Electric Car Range Anxiety
It is hoped the Android app will encourage more people to switch over to electric vehicles by addressing their fears over batteries running flat.
Bo’ness-based Sanctus Media‘s new WattsUp app will allow drivers to locate the nearest available high-speed charging points. By making it easier to find a charging point, and thus address electric car range ‘anxiety’, the company hopes that more people will be willing to make the switch over to electric vehicles (EVs).
Anxiety over EV’s range, battery life and a lack of charging points are among the main barriers stopping more people from buying an EV, according to Deloitte.
Sanctus Media’s Mike Gill explained that he was inspired to develop the app after he bought an EV, “I was an early adopter and got an electric car a few years ago but they need to be adopted by the mass market,” he said.
“We wanted to make a product that was easy for people to use to see the charging points that were available to take away some of the range anxiety that people can feel.”
To develop the app the firm was granted £36,000 from a fund established by ScottishPower’s networks arm to encourage the move to a low-carbon economy.
Last year the firm won £20 million in funding from the Green Economy Fund, which has supported over 30 other green projects.
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Speaking about WattsUp, Scott Mathieson of SP Energy Networks said: “It ticked all the boxes for us”.
“One of the public’s main concerns about electric vehicles is the availability of charging points. WattsUp shows users in real time where they can charge and when. This tool is invaluable in making low-carbon transport accessible to everyone,” he added.
Scotland has 2,306 charging points, representing 17% of the British total, making it well-served for EV owners, however, many people are not aware of this, says Mathieson. “The thing is people need to know where they are,” he said.
Last year, the firm launched an iOS version of the app which has been downloaded more than 2,000 times.