Google Maps Adds EV Charging Station Locations
You really can find everything on Google.
Google Maps now lets drivers of electric vehicles search for charging stations, which should make living the electric life a lot easier. Some automakers build station locators into their navigation systems, but that doesn't account for the fact that many drivers are ditching factory satellite navigation systems in favor of the familiar Google app. The feature just rolled out for iOS and Android.
Drivers can search for "EV charging stations" or "EV charging," and Google Maps will pull up the nearest places to charge. It will also say what kinds of plugs are available, the number of plugs, and charging speeds. Additionally, drivers will get links with more information on stations, where applicable, and user reviews.
Google Maps includes information on Tesla and ChargePoint stations globally, but information on other stations will vary by region. In the United States, it includes SemaConnect, EVgo, and Blink stations. In the U.K., stations from Chargemaster and Pod Point are shown, while drivers in Australia and New Zealand are shown information on Chargefox stations. Drivers will still need to hold the necessary accounts with each operator to actually use these stations.
The network of charging stations is expanding, but places to plug in still aren't as numerous as gas stations. Many electric cars also have relatively short ranges, so drivers can't simply putter around until they find a station as drivers of internal combustion cars can do. Any tool that makes charging stations easier to find could make a big difference, possibly even encouraging some consumers who are on the fence to give electric cars a try.