Pipcecil
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Re: Blink changes billing model for public charging

Mon Sep 08, 2014 7:09 am

mkjayakumar wrote:I find it very amusing when I see PHEV owners sitting on a public charger for a few hours to save a few dollars over driving on gasoline. Even at the old Blink rates they perhaps save, what $5 an hour? That is less than minimum wage, and presumably for someone who could afford a PHEV that costs close to 30 grand.

I take it back.I don't find it amusing. I find that silly and stupid.

Public chargers are for people who have no other choice to get back home - for BEVs. The electricity didn't magically appear in the plugs. It takes a lot of capital costs and operational costs to make that happen, just like the Starbucks at your ski resort paid through his nose to get a license to run his business, which in many cases is seasonal.


This isn't the point with PHEVs Look at the adverts. They WANT you to use electricity as much as possible. More electric miles the better. But if your public charging option is 2.5 times the price of gas, you wouldn't charge. A volt owner sitting at a Level 2 for a couple of hours is not really the point. But a Volt NOT taking advantage of a level 2 while shopping at a mall? or seeing a movie? That is not how it should work, if given the opportunity, PHEVs should use electricity over gas. Its like those PiP owners who never plug in, even at home.

If you delegate public charging ONLY to BEVs and only when desperately needed, NO ONE would use them. They would never get used. If its for an emergency then making a profit would never happen. The idea is the destination - charging at your destination is what gets the best use for level 2, even if its to add a cushion to your range. all the ev companies advertise this - its not an emergency OMG I can't make it home use.

I understand I pay a premium for it, and I understand they need to make a profit. But overcharging because you are managing your system poorly is not a solution. Why does everyone else charge less? They still make profits. Why can't carcharging follow what they are doing? I have no sympathy for them.

Again, for use people that use them frequently because we are trying to get the most out of leafs instead of using gas or purchasing a gas car, this has complicated things greatly.
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hill
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Re: Blink changes billing model for public charging

Mon Sep 08, 2014 7:32 am

walterbays wrote:
Pipcecil wrote: It just means I won't use Blink stations anymore nor will I go out of my way to frequent places that have them either. It's not worth it unless I really need it. But since NRG eVgo has a bunch of QCs around I already pay for, I would rather fuel up there instead of using the blink at the actual place I am at. Sad.
Sad that what little competition exists is undermined. I'm also an eVgo subscriber, paying them $15/month to not have to worry about where or when I drive, in lieu of paying Nissan $5,000 for a new battery. But once subscribed to one network the incremental cost to use that network is low or zero, compared to a high cost to pay a competing network's a la carte prices. So second movers can't get a toehold in the market.

In Southern California Blink, under former ownership, had the opportunity to lock up the market and be in the dominant position that eVgo now holds, but they fumbled it away with slow build out and unreliable equipment. Now even if they offered similar subscription plans the choice would be between eVgo - comprehensive and growing QC network, fairly high equipment availability, very low incidence of ICEing - and Blink - incomplete QC network, poor equipment availability, high incidence of ICEing. So I guess they're left to seek non-subscriber occasional customers, and look for profit from high a la carte prices. But with prices higher than gasoline per mile they've abandoned the PHEV market.

I don't know how any region could end up with two or more healthy charging networks, with competition putting some pressure on prices. Sad.
Ok - after giving up on Blink way back when - I finally did look into Evgo. Wanting to only say something good here ... so I'll put it this way .... their fee structure is at least less onerous than their competition.
oh! ... and they make me appreciate the chargepoint pricing a whole lot more too!
:?
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JPWhite
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Re: Blink changes billing model for public charging

Mon Sep 08, 2014 8:20 am

johnrhansen wrote: why would a business whose sole purpose is to make a profit for themselves charge anything less?


That would depend upon the business model. If the business model is to, for example, sell clothes (Kohls have free L2 charging in Tennessee) then profits come from the primary business model. If its selling convenience goods like at a gas station, discounted L3 may make sense, gas stations make very little per gallon sold, they are more interested in selling the big gulps and cigarettes etc.

As for a stand alone charging network trying make profit on charging alone I see no valid business model for L2 and maybe a model for L3.

Trying to make money on L2 is futile.
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Slow1
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Re: Blink changes billing model for public charging

Mon Sep 08, 2014 8:38 am

JPWhite wrote:
johnrhansen wrote: why would a business whose sole purpose is to make a profit for themselves charge anything less?

That would depend upon the business model. If the business model is to, for example, sell clothes (Kohls have free L2 charging in Tennessee) then profits come from the primary business model. If its selling convenience goods like at a gas station, discounted L3 may make sense, gas stations make very little per gallon sold, they are more interested in selling the big gulps and cigarettes etc.
As for a stand alone charging network trying make profit on charging alone I see no valid business model for L2 and maybe a model for L3.

Trying to make money on L2 is futile.


I tend to agree with you on these points - but the next question in my mind is what is the cost to provide this L2 or L3 for the business (the Kohls in your example)? I suspect that they will have to see a significant increase in sales as a result of such charging to break even in the costs. Thus, it may be marketing the pushes them to do it (the desire to appear "green") unless, of course, their costs are reduced significantly by incentives (OPM, aka other people's money).

I'd love to put some solid numbers on this to get the point across to folks - I've seen estimates of $15K or more for installing L2 stations (all the electrical, trenching, etc). This is a pretty serious investment. I imagine that it will be hard to make the case internally that there is a decent ROI for this.

On the subject of OPM - I wonder if ANY charging network (or stations for that matter) have been installed by non-EV related companies (i.e Tesla or Nissan) without the use of OPM? Don't misunderstand - I don't have a problem with taxes or whatever being used to kick-start creating charging station networks, but when talking about long term viability I wonder if that is even in the future...
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GRA
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Re: Blink changes billing model for public charging

Mon Sep 08, 2014 3:27 pm

Slow1 wrote:
JPWhite wrote:
johnrhansen wrote: why would a business whose sole purpose is to make a profit for themselves charge anything less?

That would depend upon the business model. If the business model is to, for example, sell clothes (Kohls have free L2 charging in Tennessee) then profits come from the primary business model. If its selling convenience goods like at a gas station, discounted L3 may make sense, gas stations make very little per gallon sold, they are more interested in selling the big gulps and cigarettes etc.
As for a stand alone charging network trying make profit on charging alone I see no valid business model for L2 and maybe a model for L3.

Trying to make money on L2 is futile.


I tend to agree with you on these points - but the next question in my mind is what is the cost to provide this L2 or L3 for the business (the Kohls in your example)? I suspect that they will have to see a significant increase in sales as a result of such charging to break even in the costs. Thus, it may be marketing the pushes them to do it (the desire to appear "green") unless, of course, their costs are reduced significantly by incentives (OPM, aka other people's money).

I'd love to put some solid numbers on this to get the point across to folks - I've seen estimates of $15K or more for installing L2 stations (all the electrical, trenching, etc). This is a pretty serious investment. I imagine that it will be hard to make the case internally that there is a decent ROI for this.

On the subject of OPM - I wonder if ANY charging network (or stations for that matter) have been installed by non-EV related companies (i.e Tesla or Nissan) without the use of OPM? Don't misunderstand - I don't have a problem with taxes or whatever being used to kick-start creating charging station networks, but when talking about long term viability I wonder if that is even in the future...

Just to provide some comparison for the cost of 'free' amenities provided by businesses to attract customers, the most basic ground level parking space outside an urban area cost $1-$2,000 in 2005 (grading, paving and striping), sans lighting, landscaping/walkways or drainage. An above ground multi-level parking garage runs $10-$30k/space, below ground ditto even higher. I forget the exact figures, but Donald Shoup ("The High Cost of Free Parking") mentions that the cost of spaces in some underground multi-level garages in the center of expensive real-estate Japanese cities is well over $250k/space. I have a vague memory that one of the garages cost something like $445,000/space. Edit: Found a source that quotes Shoup, and it was $414k/space, in Kawasaki.

Point being, every customer, regardless of whether or not they drove there, pays for the cost of those spaces via higher prices.
Last edited by GRA on Tue Sep 09, 2014 3:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Slow1
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Re: Blink changes billing model for public charging

Mon Sep 08, 2014 3:54 pm

Impressive costs I have to admit. Likely helps to explain why businesses in many areas only provide the minimum required to get their building/business permits. However, I would argue that the marginal cost/marginal benefit is all that really matters in the case of a business investing $'s in the charging infrastructure. So even if they have already spent $X,000 per spot, adding another $30K to the cost without expectation a good return is a poor business decision.

The fun, of course, is in assigning value to the various benefits. "Encouraging green practices" and "Company image" are benefits - how much $ value you assign is subjective for the most part. Thus some companies will see value, others not so much.
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TomT
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Blink to add Charger Occupancy Fees

Mon Jul 13, 2015 3:47 pm

I received this from Blink today:

Over the last year, we have heard from many EV drivers about how frustrating it is when an EV remains plugged in to the charger after it has completed charging and blocks other electric cars from charging. In an effort to address this issue, we are implementing Charger Occupancy fees on Blink-owned Level 2 EV charging stations. This means that after an EV has completed charging, if it remains connected to the charger for more than 15 minutes, then a Charger Occupancy fee of $0.08 per minute will be assessed until the connector is removed.

The new Charger Occupancy feature will begin to roll-out on Monday, July 20, 2015 and will update by market, depending on regional and host-specific factors.

To help ensure that you receive updates on your charging status as well as when the applicable Charger Occupancy fees will apply, we encourage you to double check the email and SMS notifications set up for your account. To do so, please visit the Blink Network at http://www.BlinkNetwork.com and login to your Blink account. The notification section is on the right side of the "User Info" tab. You may also review and set the notifications in the "My Account" section of the Blink mobile application.

We have also made several enhancements to Blink Network and the Blink mobile application, including:
• Improving the accuracy of charger status information;
• Adding more detailed charging session information to Blink account and notifications; and
• Enhancing the ability to become a Blink member via the Blink mobile application.
We hope that these changes will assist you in fulfilling your EV charging needs. Should you have questions about the new Charger Occupancy fee, please contact Blink Customer Support at (888) 998-2546 or support@blinknetwork.com

Charge On!

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Re: Blink to add Charger Occupancy Fees

Mon Jul 13, 2015 4:32 pm

TomT wrote:I received this from Blink today:

Over the last year, we have heard from many EV drivers about how frustrating it is when an EV remains plugged in to the charger after it has completed charging and blocks other electric cars from charging. In an effort to address this issue, we are implementing Charger Occupancy fees on Blink-owned Level 2 EV charging stations. This means that after an EV has completed charging, if it remains connected to the charger for more than 15 minutes, then a Charger Occupancy fee of $0.08 per minute will be assessed until the connector is removed.

The new Charger Occupancy feature will begin to roll-out on Monday, July 20, 2015 and will update by market, depending on regional and host-specific factors. <snip>
All for this, although judging by the rarity with which my local Blink L2 chargers (10 plus a QC at one location) are used, this should be one of the last places to impose this fee. I've never seen more than 3 of the L2s in use simultaneously, but the QC does sometimes have two cars hooked up. What they really need to do, and said they were looking into last year, is provide for reduced-cost. off-peak charging with delayed start. That way, local apartment dwellers could realistically consider using these things, instead of them setting empty 90+% of the time.
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dsatwork
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Re: Blink changes billing model for public charging

Mon Jul 13, 2015 10:52 pm

Ok, so can somebody help me understand something here? I'm a newbie only having owned my leaf a little more than a month now and I understand that Blink has done a terrible job up to this point and their fees are charged by the kilowatt. But what does any of that have to do with their announcement today?
Over the last year, we have heard from many EV drivers about how frustrating it is when an EV remains plugged in to the charger after it has completed charging and blocks other electric cars from charging. In an effort to address this issue, we are implementing Charger Occupancy fees on Blink-owned Level 2 EV charging stations. This means that after an EV has completed charging, if it remains connected to the charger for more than 15 minutes, then a Charger Occupancy fee of $0.08 per minute will be assessed until the connector is removed.


Aren't they just trying to deal with the issue I had the very first time I went out with my leaf and thought I could just pull into the Carlsbad Outlet mall and get on a L2 charger? Which happen to be NRG eVgo chargers and had no idea how it works. There was one CHADEMO QuickCharger being used by a Leaf owner and the other L2 charger that was iced by a Volt and in this case he wasn't plugged in but rather just using the space for parking. Since then I have seen plenty of L2 chargers that were plugged in and not charging. I think this is the problem Blink is trying to address and keep chargers charging so they can make some money. It seems that everyone is calling this a money grab or a price increase and I don't get it. They aren't renting parking places they're selling a charging service.

Maybe it's because all of our experiences are so different. I bought my 2013 Leaf because it was only 13k and I was looking for a new car when I found out that my employer who owns a Tesla and wants to encourage everyone to plug in thought that he could do his part by putting in L2 charge stations and offer them to the employees for free. Within 3 weeks there were 3 Leafs, so I guess it worked. So the extent of my public charging so far has been a CHADEMO QuickCharger with NRG eVgo that in theory cost me 5.95 plus 20 cents per minute ($11.95 total) to get me up to 80% but I have yet to be charged for it. On July 3rd I took my first quick charge trip over 213 miles from my house in San Marcos, CA to downtown LA at the Urban Radish where I used a Blink CHADEMO QuickCharger that only cost me $6.94 to get me up to 94% and they gave me the option of 80%,90% or 100% which NRG eVgo did not. That 94% got me back down to Dana Point where I used the Nissan Dealers CHADEMO QuickCharger (for free) that got me to 89% which got me back home. Also on the way up since I used the same Nissan Dealers CHADEMO QuickCharger (for free) and drank their coffee and ate their snacks and used their restrooms coming and going. I also stopped in Buena Park Nissan Dealer for a quick charge but got beat by 2 minutes so why I was waiting jumped on an L2 charger and when the owner didn't come back after 35 minutes or so I showed my wife we had enough miles on our tank to make it and that was enough to relieve her range anxiety and off we went.

Besides wanting to brag about all the fun I've been having with my new leaf that's saving my $200 month in gas on my commute and allowing us to only fill up our Honda CR-V once a month instead of every other week and allowing me to avoid traffic by using the carpool lane and get to work on time more consistently. I just don't see how this discussion got hijacked into a Blink bashing fest.

Someone explain it to me...isn't everyone ones life amazingly better like mine is?
NRG eVgo charged me more than Blink but I don't hate them.
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desiv
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Re: Blink changes billing model for public charging

Tue Jul 14, 2015 7:59 am

dsatwork wrote:Aren't they just trying to deal with the issue I had the very first time I went out with my leaf and thought I could just pull into the Carlsbad Outlet mall and get on a L2 charger? Which happen to be NRG eVgo chargers and had no idea how it works. There was one CHADEMO QuickCharger being used by a Leaf owner and the other L2 charger that was iced by a Volt and in this case he wasn't plugged in but rather just using the space for parking.


Nope, this won't affect that type of ICEing at all... (Taking the spot yet not being plugged in)
This is for the people who park at a Blink L2 charger to charge and leave their car there even after it's done charging.
So, the people who need an hour of L2, and park, plug in, and go see a movie.
You stop by an hour and a half into it, and they are fully charged, but still there plugged in.
You can't use that spot to charge. Blink isn't getting any more money.

With this new charge, at least Blink will be getting some money for the time they can't charge another car.
Now, in the case of a movie (probably not the best example), the person might think it's worth it.. ;-)
So, this is really for the people who park. charge and go shopping!!! ;-) This way, when the car is charged, they will get the text/email and can move their car to free up the spot for you! ;-)
(Well, they can do that now, but they frequently choose not to, and it doesn't cost them...)

Blink isn't the greatest out there, and they are a bit spendy (I question the business model myself), but this change is probably a good thing..

I have been known to plug in my car at lunch. Eat lunch, and then return to work while it charges.
When it's done before my workday ends, it would be very easy for me to just leave the car there and plugged in a hour or so.
But I try to make sure I am there as close as I can to when it's ready. I usually don't wait for the e-mail, but I'm checking Carwings to see how it's going. Then I take my break and move the car, even tho there are multiple L2's and likely free ones. Because I think it's the right thing to do...

desiv
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