We leave no questions or wishes unattended

If you’re interested in charging and billing solutions for electric vehicles or a new provider of green electricity, it’s only natural that you have questions. With all our products and solutions, it’s of maximum importance for us to leave no questions or wishes unattended. With ubitricity, you’re placing your trust in an experienced partner who can provide answers to all your questions around charging infrastructure, billing solutions for electric mobility or green electricity – which is why we have put together a Q&A for you here. Didn’t find the response to your question? Then we’re happy to respond to you in person.


Answers to your questions for councils & boroughs

SmartCables are equipped with V2G technology enabling full smart grid services.
SmartCables are equipped with a MID-Meter and M2M communication and will enable smart charging services.
ubitricity’s mobile metering system is an open distribution platform for energy suppliers. EV users can choose between a set of green mobile electricity tariffs. The contract is directly attached to the SmartCable – green electricity becomes available at every SimpleSocket.

Yes. In this case, a subsequent data transaction enables charging by using an expiring stored certificate. The SmartCable will then ‘wake up‘ and push the data once in an area with a signal.

The preferred model used by local authorities is not to reserve spaces for EVs in residential areas. Therefore multiple sockets are deployed in an area with the aim that there are enough opportunities to park near the sockets to charge. 

During the charging process, the cable is locked on both the vehicle and the socket. Nobody can pull the cable out of the socket or from the car. Drivers can end charging transactions by simply unlocking the car. If the cable is stolen from the car when not in use for charging (or simply lost), users can cancel the cable and arrange for a replacement. The old cable then becomes obsolete and will no longer be able to access any ubitricity charge points.

Yes. The SmartCable is equipped with a standard Type 2 connector and is compatible with all standard charging stations. The cable will operate in a passive mode and ubitricity will not see the data from non ubitricity charge points. You will need to follow access requirements for these charge points in the normal way as set out by their provider.

Typically, EV users purchase the SmartCable bundled with a mobile electricity contract. That way the EV users support the costs for billing, communication and data management.

Because the billing of the electricity is kWh-based, the EV user will be just invoiced for the consumed kWhs. However, please make sure to check the signage for the area as to whether any parking fees may apply.
Normally, the ubitricity SimpleSockets that are installed in residential areas can be accessed only by those EV users that have the ubitricity SmartCable. Streetlights are an unmetered power outlet, the SmartCable brings the required metering to the streetlight. Therefore, users with a standard cable normally can't use the charging spot as those cables don't have an integrated electricity meter.

The SimpleSockets are free of running costs for IT services. Legal requirements prescribe to check the RCD on a regular basis and to conduct an installation test every other year.

Once you have identified the locations where the low-cost charging points are to be installed, ubitricity liaises with the council and approved service providers to arrange installation. Simple and straightforward.

Once you have identified the locations where the low-cost charging points are to be installed, ubitricity liaises with the council and approved service providers to arrange installation. Simple and straightforward.

The installation time of a SimpleSocket in a streetlight averages 30 minutes.

The ability to retrofit a streetlight into a charge point depends on a number of factors and not all streetlights will be suitable, currently concrete columns for example cannot be retrofitted, although most councils are replacing their concrete stock over time.  For a definitive statement as to whether a streetlight can be retrofitted or not a site survey by one of our service providers will need to be conducted.
The ability to retrofit a streetlight into a charge point depends on a number of factors and not all streetlights will be suitable, currently concrete columns for example cannot be retrofitted, although most councils are replacing their concrete stock over time.  For a definitive statement as to whether a streetlight can be retrofitted or not a site survey by one of our service providers will need to be conducted.
Our current maximum output at streetlights equates to around 5.8 kW. As we’re complementing conventional charging infrastructure with a “low power, low cost” solution and accessing existing infrastructure, this is the highest power typically available for residential on-street parking at a street light.

The EV user carries the legal duty to maintain traffic safety and is obliged to meet all necessary and reasonable precautions in this sense. It is especially important to make sure that other traffic participants (pedestrians, cyclists, motorcycles etc.) are not affected or hindered by the SmartCable.

ubitricity takes all usual protection measures such as lockable plug connectors in order to prevent theft or unauthorised charging interruptions as well as resilient hardware cases.
Yes. ubitricity’s charging solution is eligible for OLEV funding (Office for Low Emissions Vehicles On-Street Residential Charge Point Scheme). If required we are happy to assist or review applications.
The MobileCharging System is already being successfully used in several London Boroughs such as Hounslow, the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, the City of Westminster,  Richmond upon Thames and Hammersmith and Fulham.

Electromobility is picking up pace. In order to easily integrate electric vehicles into the city landscape, all you require is an intelligent solution for the charging infrastructure and billing. ubitricity offers you a comprehensive service and industry leading know-how based on our extensive experience.


At the charge point

On the one hand, your car could already be completely charged. Also, some vehicle-sided settings might prevent your car from charging – so please check your vehicle settings for such obstacles. Generally, ubitricity technology is conform to all EVs licensed in the EU and nothing should keep your EV from charging in this respect.
That can happen if your SmartCable hasn’t connected with the mobile network for a while. Please bring your SmartCable to a location where it can establish a mobile connection and press the buttons „1“ und „Checkmark“ at the same time for six seconds. The SmartCable reboots and you can start to charge as usual immediately.
Please use the form “Report a problem” of the respective SimpleSocket in the charge point search. The SimpleSocket will be repaired as soon as possible. In urgent cases, please contact support: +44 800 024 6279.
Not to worry – that can happen sometimes. Plug your SmartCable into the SimpleSocket once more with more pressure and into the car on the other side – just like when you charge normally. Now, pay close attention to the SmartCable’s display and try to finish the charging transaction again as usual. Normally, the SmartCable should disconnect normally from the SimpleSocket now. If this should not be the case, please contact support: +44 800 024 6279.
Not to worry – that can happen sometimes. In this case, please plug your SmartCable into the SimpleSocket and press the two buttons „1“ und „Checkmark“ at the same time for six seconds. Your SmartCable reboots and you can start to charge as usual directly afterwards.  
Your SmartCable saves the charging data and transmits them automatically once a mobile connection is available. This way, you can also charge at locations without a mobile connection (such as underground car parks). However, your SmartCable does need to connect to the network at least once a week. That’s why it’s best to always keep your SmartCable with you in your car.
We care for your safety – and the safety of others. This is why we ask you to please take care that your cable does not hinder others while charging. This is especially important when you are charging at public charging spots.
If you want to finish the charging transaction, unlock the plug on the vehicle side by opening your car. Always pull the plug from the car first. As soon as the SimpleSocket’s LED is orange, the plug is unlocked at the charge point as well and can easily be pulled off. This finishes the charging transaction.
It’s quite simple: The SimpleSocket’s LED flashes blue if it’s ready for use. You can now plug your SmartCable in the SimpleSocket and your vehicle. The charging session starts automatically once your car is ready. When charging, both plugs are locked and the charge point’s LED pulsates green.

Answers to your questions about our technology

Data security and the security of our users are our top priorities when developing the systems. We’re using a so-called end-to-end security which employs an authenticated authorization using a PKI (Public Key Infrastructure) between the components. Additionally, communication is encrypted. Our security concept has been developed in co-operation with the Security Working Group of the National Metrology Institute of Germany.
The SmartCable contains technology for monitoring the whole charging transaction – starting with authorization and consumption metering and including the transfer of consumption data and billing process.
The SmartCable with integrated electricity meter reduces the charging spots to lean SimpleSockets. They are technically compact and nearly free of running costs, making ubiquitous intelligent charging infrastructure reality. Drivers take their mobile electricity contracts along with them to the charging spot and receive one bill for all charging transactions. Charging and billing data are shown live in the user portal – for the SmartCable as well as the SimpleSocket.
During the transaction, the technology is locked on both the vehicle and the infrastructural side. Nobody can pull the cable out of the charging spot or the car and it’s protected from robbery. Drivers can end charging transactions by simply unlocking the car.
The SmartCable is compatible with other charging infrastructure, but drivers then charge to the conditions of the respective provider, not their own tariffs.
Theoretically, EVs could be charged at normal sockets – but then, drivers can’t use separate (ecological) tariffs. For smart grid integration, it’s better to address the respective consumer (i.e. the EV) separately.  Also, everyone in the household would have to pay for the electricity used by the car because the electricity would be metered by the normal household meter, not the individual user’s meter.
Our SimpleSocket’s current maximum workload amounts to 4.6 kW (20 A 1ph). As we’re complementing conventional charging infrastructure by a “low power, low cost”-solution, this is what suits most of our use cases.
ubitricity takes all usual protection measures such as lockable plug connectors in order to prevent thievery or unauthorized charging interruptions as well as resilient hardware cases.
In this case, a subsequent data transaction enables charging by using an expiring certificate that actualizes itself when reconnecting online.
In order to charge EVs as flexibly as possible, two to three charging spots per EV are required. Conventional wall-boxes and charging stations contain metering and communication technology, resulting in high capital and running costs. In Mobile Metering, one single meter is integrated into the vehicle, which means there is only one meter per vehicle or SmartCable. This reduces the charging spot to a lean SimpleSocket – without expensive stationary technology and with next to no very low running costs. Ubiquitous smart charging infrastructure is made possible.

Answers to your questions about electric mobility

No, electric power is no free give away. But driving on electricity is much cheaper than driving on conventional fuels! A gas fired combustion engine consuming 7 l/100km Driving with electricity is already much cheaper than driving with conventional fuels. A normal gasoline car uses roughly 7l/100km and thus costs 9€ per 100km. In contrast, a normal EV runs this distance on 20 kWh, amounting to only 7€ for the same distance. In the future, driving with renewable energies will get even cheaper as they’re not limited – as opposed to crude oil or other fossil fuels. The growing demand for crude oil is facing ever scarcer resources and thus petrol prices will be rising on the long run. This does not affect EV drivers.costs you some 9€ for these 100 kilometers today. An electric car using 20kWh on the same distance only costs you some 3€. And in the future, this balance will further shift in favour of electric vehicles. Increasing global demand for crude oil and diminishing supplies will translate into higher gas prices in the long run. If you are driving an EV, this does not affect you.
As of now, no car, not even an EV, is totally CO2-neutral when taking into account its whole life-span. But renewable energies produce no emissions in the actual production process – which means that your EV drives practically free of emissions if you charge renewable energies. Also, driving EVs reduces greenhouse gas and particulates emissions. It’s crucial to charge renewable energies – otherwise, greenhouse gas emissions are not reduced but only shifted. Also, EVs emit next to no heat or noises, making them friendly to their direct environment and, overall, to the climate.
In the first step, EVs are actually nothing more than another consumer that needs to be connected to the grid in order to be of use. But making use of smart grid integration and ubiquitous charging infrastructure, EVs could be much more than that. Their batteries become a distributed saving network, balancing energy shortages by giving a little of their charged electricity back into the grid or absorbing overproduction. Those grid services are summed up under the term “Vehicle to Grid”.
Germany’s Federal Government is looking to put one million EVs on German roads by 2020. The German power grid would already be able to handle this number of vehicles – no need to worry about charging EVs causing a blackout in the near future. As the number of EVs is rising slowly, grid operators have sufficient time to enhance the grid’s capacities as required.

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