Google Maps adds information about the charging station for electric vehicles and promises to make commissioning an EV or plug-in hybrid easier. The new functionality will be added to the Google Maps app for iOS and Android today and will follow in the next few weeks in the desktop version, says Google.
This closes a conspicuous gap in the transport segment. Google Maps has long provided public transport options, including buses, subways, and ride options, as well as points of interest (POIs). However, it has left peculiarities for EV charging points to other applications.
Now you can search for "ev charging" or "ev charging station" and get a list of the nearest options to your current location. However, as expected, implementing Google's EV charging infrastructure search is more than just a physical location. It also offers information about the charging process for each job.
For example, there is data about the types of ports available and how many are available. Google Maps also shows the charging speed and the associated charging system. Tesla and Chargepoint networks are supported worldwide, while EVgo, Blink and SemaConnect are also available in the US. The United Kingdom includes Chargemaster and Pod Point stations. There will be Charfleox locations in Australia and New Zealand.
Each entry also displays details of the store where the charger is located. Conversely, companies that have charging stations on the premises also have a connection to the specific charging side. The drivers can give ratings of chargers as well as photos and questions to other drivers.
Surely it's a welcome improvement if you can do all this from the Google Maps app – and also include a charge point stop throughout your navigation. Nevertheless, there are still good reasons to use other applications. For example, it's unclear if Google Maps shows the current usage of the charger, while network-specific charging applications typically include live information about whether a car is already connected.
Other apps, such as PlugShare, have made a name for themselves through the offering's extensive filter options. This can be the limitation of locations based on the type of charger – important if, for example, you have a car with a J-1772 connector It can not be used with a Tesla Supercharger – whether paid or free or in places with limited access.
However, this new Google Maps integration could be a groundbreaking change for EV drivers. This is particularly the case when you consider that Google Maps with iOS 12 is now available in Apple CarPlay. This could make finding a public charger easier than using the native navigation system in your EV or plug-in hybrid.