Image credit: ChargePoint by Coulomb
There's no doubt that a standardized, well distributed network of charging points would be a huge boon for the electric vehicle industry. From their plan to get electric vehicle charging stations in 28 states, to their collaboration with a green(er) McDonalds on EV charging, Coulomb Technologies' ChargePoint Network seems to be a front-runner in creating a convenient, widely available charging solution for EV owners - and they are going global too. The public utility in Bochum, Ruhr in Germany is the latest of many to install ChargePoints EV charging outlets - creating the latest in a network that has spread from Amsterdam to Milan, not to mention the numerous charging stations in the US. Members subscribe to the network and receive a ChargePoint Smart Card that allows them to charge their car at any charging station worldwide which, as availability of EVs becomes more commonplace, and as charging stations spread, should be a big help in getting over "range anxiety".
Of course there seems little chance that an EV owner in Germany will drive to San Francisco to charge up - but if car clubs and rental companies catch on to the EV as a product service system, then a ChargePoints membership could become a truly useful tool for the global traveler. (Although let's not forget that a bus ticket will most likely always be greener.)