The apps have been launched for the iOS and Android platforms. There is also a companion website for people on other platforms or for those not using smartphones. Topping up and finding charge points around you has never been so easy.
Many of you know about PluginIndia's community charging project, where the EV community in Pune, Mumbai, Delhi and Bengaluru have approached businesses, homes to install simple 15 Amp sockets for the benefit of electric vehicle users.
We have around 20+ community charging stations. On top of that Mahindra Reva, have setup charge points to benefit their electric cars. We also got data from them. Managing these stations in our charging page was getting tedious. Also searching for a charge station was not easy. Thus the idea was conceived to develop a mobile app by the community for the community.
The EV community had a poll to choose an apt name for the mobile app and 'RE:CHARGE India' won.
Many our inherent ideologies are built around RE: like ReLive events, ReNewable Energy, ReUse, ReCycle. So ReCharge fits well into the scheme of things.
Download the apps from here:
For those who dont use Android or iOS smartphones, we are also working on website that will mimic most features of the app. The website will have a responsive UI that aligns to the screen size (Computer, Tablets and Phones). However, we consider this site to be used mostly on mobile phones. The URL is - http://rechargeindia.me
The logo represents a charging cable and speedometer combined - signifying an EV. This makes the shape of a GPS tag, upon the Indian tricolor background. The Indian tricolor is extremely important to all EV owners. When you use an EV, you don't consume imported OIL, which is a huge burden on our economy and you also help in cleaning up your city's air.
This app has the following features
- Find electric vehicle charge points near your location
- Browse electric vehicle charge points on a Map
- Search for charge points
- View electric vehicle charge points details
- Get driving directions from your location to an electric vehicle charge point
- Call phone number directly from app
- Report an electric vehicle charge point
- Add a new electric vehicle charge point
Anyone can add a community charging station, by filling a form and the app opens the default mail app. The details can be emailed to the RE:Charge India support and these stations will be added to the database.
There is segregation with respect to stations that are plotted on the map. Red colored pins indicate Mahindra Reva charge stations, Green colored pins indicate community charge stations for all EV's and in the future there will be other colors representing other types of charge stations (Example - Blue for DC Quick charge stations).
Google Maps integration is included. View details of a charge point and tap on the 'Directions' button near the 'Address' label and this opens up Google Maps app, with the directions from your location to the charge point.
The team regularly updates the charge point list (database) on the server, whenever a new community charging station is added. The app can stay 'updated', by downloading the latest database from time to time. All the user needs to do is to tap on 'Update Now!' button in the 'Update Charge Point List' screen. When this is done, the app will check, if the server has an updated database, if there is one, it will download the database and replace the current version.
The user instantly sees that the new database has been applied and the version number is changed along with the
'Total Number of Stations' count.
Currently only charge point data for Delhi, Mumbai, Pune and Bengaluru have been updated. We will update the server with more stations in the coming months for other cities as well.
Also this is the only feature that needs an internet connection to work.
- Push notifications would be useful, especially if there is a server side database update.
- Search can be improved. Currently you can only search the charge points. Maybe you can search for places as well. The user can select a place, the charge points around the place can be plotted on the map.
The iOS app codebase is open sourced in my github account. We believe in open sourcing and sharing what we learn.
PluginIndia.com/Charging wont list community charging stations from now on. The app and the companion website will be the center of managing charge points.
We even tested the app on a weekend drive to the mountains, to test the location functionality and it works very well.
The app showed us the nearest charge point around our current location and we charged our car at the community charging station. The team is expecting feedback, suggestions and bugs noticed. Please send them to firstname.lastname@example.org or comment below.