Zap-Map, the popular electric car chargepoint location app, has launched a new in-app payment tool called Zap-Pay to make charging an EV simpler and more seamless.
There are currently more than 40 individual charging networks operating in the UK. Most require individual sign-ups, meaning electric car owners have to use multiple apps and cards.
Zap-Pay will allow EV drivers to search, plan and pay, all in one app. Similar to using a Tesla Supercharger, drivers simply plug in, says the firm: the app manages the rest.
The first network to join the new cross-network payment service is Engenie.
The firm says “a wave of network partners” will follow in the autumn.
It will be rolled out “across UK networks in 2021, providing unique and unrivalled coverage across the whole country”.
‘As easy as filling up’
Government ministers have been critical of how complicated it is to charge an electric vehicle. “It should be as easy for drivers to charge their vehicles at public charge points as it is to pay for petrol or diesel,” said transport minister Rachel Maclean.
“As the EV market continues to go from strength to strength, journey planning and paying with one app or membership card must also follow – Zap-Pay will help do just that.”
Last week, Mike Hawes, chief executive of the Society of Motor Manufacturers said most research surveys suggest a key concern of potential electric car owners is charging.
“It should be as easy to charge as it is to fill up. We need a visible, reliable and interoperable network.”
Ben Lane, joint MD at Zap-Map, said that “no one should need dozens of accounts, apps and cards to charge their car.
“Providing a seamless charging experience is essential to accelerate this shift [to EVs].”
Zap-Map has been downloaded more than 250,000 times and a survey by Engenie showed 90 percent of drivers regularly use it.
“Zap-Map is the most used and trusted EV charger mapping tool in the UK,” said Engenie CEO Ian Johnston. “It is perfectly placed to bring this game-changing solution to market.”