Topic charging station

Mobility in a state of flux

The car industry is changing dramatically. The changes affect the production, the behavior of the consumers and the challenges the car dealers are facing. This is what trend observer Mathias Haas is convinced of. On the website of the Huffington Post the scientist is answering questions about the megatrend in the car industry. Haas is convinced that people are increasingly not looking for cars but for convenient mobility. From his perspective this change of behavior is a megatrend which will be long lasting and fundamental but also extremely subliminal.

In the opinion of the trend observer this fundamental change can also be proven by the fact that many businesses from the IT, Internet and entertainment industry are currently starting to cooperate with the leading car brands. “The big US-companies, mainly from the Silicon Valley, have overfull wallets. Why should a company like for example Facebook not have the strength to successfully enter the market for mobility solutions”?

Haas identifies another megatrend which is emerging at the same time: digitalization. “A smartphone is a piece of technology, but also an approach to life”, said Haas. Smartphones make information and communications permanently available, serve as a platform for entertainment and as shopping portals. Hence the digitalization also affects the car dealers how have to cope with new challenges and new consumer behavior. Just like the car manufacturers they have to find ways to react to the new opportunities that consumers get by mobile digital devices. People are already able to compare cars online, configure their car of choice and even buy it via smartphone.

To manage the change successfully the trend observer recommends vendors and car dealers to find new and better ways to emotionalize their customers to keep them loyal. This can mainly be done via design, innovative features and tools which enable interaction – just like modern charging station should do, too.

Steering wheel out, processor in – The automobile future

The international magazine WIRED frequently features very exciting topics re, technology and taks a look into the future of science, technology and society. Recently WIRED has published an article about a study of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). The survey basis on the answers of 300 experts from different industries who are up to date with the automation and the increasing level of technology in processes in today´s economy.

Their conclusion: In 2030 new cars will come without a horn, without driving mirror and without emergency brake. In 20135 you will not find a brake pedal, no accelerator pedal and even no steering wheel. Why? Because the cars will drive fully autonomous in 20 years, so the experts say.

The major car manufacturers have made incredible progress in the last couple of years to come up with cars which act widely autonomously in specific situations. These are for example advanced parking assistants systems, cruise control in combination with distance keeping warning systems, lane departure warning systems and the automatic detection of pedestrians and safety hazards. In all these areas the automation of driving has been almost brought to perfection.

But there is still a long way to go until we reach the level of completely autonomous driving. From a technology perspective several solutions need to be optimized – but that is just a question of time and investment. There are some questions which might me more difficult to answer: What happens in the case of an accident – can a PC be held responsible for an accident? And what will insurances do? Will the IT of the car have an impact on the insurance fee? What will the law maker say?

And finally, the development of e-mobility will have an impact, too. Electrical drive engineering and the charging technology will influence the cars of the future and this of course will also change the requirements for charging stations and their technology.

(auto)-mobile payment at the pump

The German consumers are ready for mobile payment: One out of three would like top y at petrol stations via smartphone. In public transport, supermarkets and drug stores the demand for mobile payment is also huge: 45 percent of all smartphone-owners would like to pay for their bus- and train-tickets mobile. Around 30 percent of consumers would also like to benefit from mobile payment in supermarkets. There is also high demand for additional features and services: Almost 30 percent of the population would like to get additional information like a current overview on their latest transactions to get the most out of the mobile technology. What also matters to the consumers is speed. One out of three would like to benefit from a much faster payment process by mobile payment.

Mobile Payment

Mobile Payment

The survey from TNS Infratest is a strong indicator of what consumers expect from businesses: making mobile technology available for all kinds of uses. One of these cases is payment – for example at the pump. For the future and the success of emobility this means that not only vehicles but also the charging stations need to provide interfaces and functions for mobile data transmission to get fully accepted by consumers.

Mobilità elettrica meets dolce vita

To be honest: When we are thinking about Italy and traffic, the associations that firstly come to our minds are full of prejudices … chaos, speeding, scooters. We would hardly mention the word e-mobility when talking about the nation with the – for Germans – apparently unbeatable soccer team.

However, even in the country of Ferrari, Lamborghini and Maserati e-mobility manages to gain more and more attention in the public. That is why our conversations with businesspeople and local politicians who we have just met on a several days lasting trip to South Tyrol and Milan were very positive. The meetings and events in northern Italy even included a conversation with a city councilor of Milano, and have been organized by the German chamber of foreign trade and the Federal Ministry of Economy and Technology. Just a few weeks before the latest trip we have already been on a similar journey, making interesting contacts in Turin. Continue reading →