Cities and municipalities face a different challenge: people often park their cars all day long in connected parking spaces, tying up that space, and preventing others from using the charging stations.  To combat this, GreenFlux is able to charge different rates for different times of day, so that it’s more expensive to use the space during the daytime, which helps streamline the spaces and free them up for more usage.

“This is all part of changing behaviors,” says Sanichar. “People are so used to fossil fuel-powered cars and the habits that go along with it, such as pulling into a petrol station, filling up, and knowing more or less how long that fuel would last. When it comes to EVs people are still learning, so we provide incentives to help them understand how long a charge will last and that yes, they will make it home!”

How Connectivity & IoT Make it Work

Like everything else in the EV market, the role of IoT is changing. When GreenFlux first started out, they equipped all the charging stations with SIM cards over GPRS (General Packet Radio Service) and they really didn’t care if the charging point was offline for an hour or even a day or two – the charger was working locally so if someone swiped their card the information was stored locally and as soon as things were back online Greenflux got the data and were able to invoice the customer.  GPRS wasn’t super stable but they didn’t need super stable at that time.

“Today, things are different, and the most important difference is that charging stations need to be online 24/7, because people charge with their app, and they need to see in their app how much they’re charging, the cost, etc.,” says Sanichar. “This means the moment a charging station goes offline, there needs to be an immediate alert that something is going on. We need to check the network and the charger and fix it quickly.  In the early days, it was just about connecting the stations and getting data once a day or in some cases, even once a week. Now, it’s all about real time connectivity. We need to have direct access to the charging stations so we can tell them what to do, how fast to charge, and to ensure we don’t go outside capacity thresholds.”