Telefonica, through its O2 mobile brand, is to provide M2M technology to connect Chargemaster’s UK-wide network of electric vehicle charging stations.
Launched last week, Polar is the UK’s largest private sector-funded national charging network and has been developed by Chargemaster in collaboration with motor manufacturers. Telefonica’s M2M offering will see sim cards embedded into each charging point, communicating back to a central database via the mobile network, ensuring that customers can quickly authorise themselves when using a charging point.
“We are delighted to form this relationship with Telefonica,” said David Martell CEO of Chargemaster. “Chargemaster through its Polar network is leading the market in the expanding world of low carbon motoring. The two companies’ strengths are complementary and we very much look forward to working with Telefonica.”
The agreement combines Chargemaster’s experience in electric charging with Telefonica’s mobile expertise, and will see the two companies collaborate further in developing services that provide simple and helpful ways for users to help stimulate the adoption of electric vehicle charging services. These will include, for example, services that let customers find their nearest charging point and pay for using it all via their mobile phone.
“We are committed to bringing products and services to market that help our customers live more sustainable lives,” said Gilli Coston, head of M2M at Telefonica UK.
“Electric cars represent a huge potential growth area and working with Chargemaster we hope to develop a range of services to help our customers and to boost this fledgling market.”
Telefonica is already a global player in the use of M2M technology in the transport sector, particularly in the field of fleet management. Last month, Telefonica and Masternaut agreed to market jointly telematics-enabled fleet management services to business customers.