GE spent the second half of 2011 teasing its WattStation solution for powering electric vehicles. Now that the company has captured your attention with that slick, Yves Behar-designed "pedestal," it's ready to deliver. In case you forgot, the WattStation Connect is a charging station / software platform developed in cooperation with Hertz that lets EV owners manage the power-up process remotely via a mobile app and the WattStation's three connectivity options: 3G, Wi-Fi and Ethernet. The app, expected to hit iOS and Android in the coming weeks, also help users locate stations and lets them virtually pay for juicing up their vehicles. While the charging platform will work its way into the hearts and homes of those who own an EV, GE will also deploy this tech to retailers and fleet owners looking to zero in on their electricity usage. It's not yet clear where the WattStations will be or are already available, but GE is apparently ready to start the rollout now. Get the full details in the presser after the break.
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GE Energy Launches the Fully Networked WattStation™ and WattStation Connect
Software, a Complete Electric Vehicle Charging Platform
* Innovative Electric Vehicle Solution from GE Combines Connectivity,
Convenience, Safety and Reliability in an Integrated Charging System
* GE Energy's Industrial Solutions Business Works with Hertz® to Provide EV
Users with a Secure and Easy-to-Use System
* WattStation Charging Station Features Stylish Modern Design and
Intelligent Retractable Cord
SAE 2012 World Congress
DETROIT -- April 24, 2012
GE Energy's (NYSE: GE) Industrial Solutions business unveiled its new
ecomagination™-approved WattStation™ and WattStation™ Connect today at the SAE
2012 World Congress in Detroit, Mich. A complete, user-friendly electric
vehicle (EV) charging station and software platform, the solution allows
WattStation owners to manage charging stations remotely, giving them the
ability to manage and set customer pricing for EV charging, provide access
control at their facilities, generate valuable reports and engage with
customers in new ways. Now available, GE's sleek, stylish and modern designed
WattStation pedestal EV charger is easy to use, customizable and features a
GE Energy is at work connecting people and ideas to create advanced
technologies like the WattStation and WattStation Connect. EV users can now
gather information and process payments in an easy-to-use, customizable,
reliable and secure system.
The WattStation Connect full-service software platform helps meet a wide
variety of EV needs, whether it is a retailer looking to attract new
customers, a commercial property manager in need of information on electricity
usage or a fleet owner in search of better cost-allocation data. WattStation
Connect provides owners a user-friendly method to manage, monitor and maintain
their EV charging ecosystem network.
"We worked closely with Hertz in the development of the WattStation Connect
software because Hertz is at the forefront of electric vehicle deployment,"
said Michael Mahan, product general manager, EV infrastructure for GE Energy's
Industrial Solutions business. "Their global EV solutions in the U.S., Europe
and China require the advanced, networked stations that we offer."
Industrial Solutions is forming data acquisition agreements with key
navigation companies to share information on the installations and
availability of WattStations throughout the U.S. and Canada. This enables EV
drivers to view and locate GE's WattStations, obtain directions to the EV
charging stations, access pricing details and determine whether a unit is
available for charging. In addition to global positioningsystems (GPS), the GE
WattStation Connect data will be available through the Internet, mobile
app/device and future in-vehicle (built-in navigation) systems.
GE Energy's Industrial Solutions business is working with a well-known online
payment company to enable drivers to safely and conveniently pay for charging
fees through the WattStation Connect mobile app. The app will be available for
download in the coming weeks. EV drivers can use the mobile app to scan the
quick response (QR) barcode on the WattStation charger. The QR code will
identify the station and the pricing structure for that individual charger.
GE Energy's WattStation and WattStation Connect are designed to work within
the EV ecosystem, smart electronic commerce and monitoring systems, making it
energy efficient and providing customers with a no-hassle experience. The
award-winning WattStation^1 can be installed into any commercial, public or
retail location. EV users will be able to use this product at retail outlets,
hotels, office buildings, institutions such as hospitals, public and private
parking decks and street parking. Here are some of the benefits:
* Combining functionality with a modern design by renowned industrial
designer Yves Behar, the GE WattStation pedestal uses smart grid
technology and enables utility companies to manage the impact of electric
vehicles on the local and regional power grids. Its sleek interface with
LED indicator lights helps to identify when it's available for use,
charging an EV or if a fault has occurred.
* The WattStation's intelligent self-cleaning cord management system allows
for use in a multitude of environments without compromising the life of
the product. The cord is self contained within the charger to keep the
cord organized and out of the way when the charger is not in use. The cord
only retracts when the charger is disconnected from a vehicle, preventing
damage when the charger is in use.
* The upgradeable WattStation is designed to grow with its users' needs. Its
modular design simplifies in-field upgrades and ensures that EV charging
facilities can expand without the need for costly replacement equipment.
* Three modes of communication (cellular 3G, Wi-Fi or Ethernet connections)
provide WattStation owners with flexibility for communicating back to the
WattStation Connect network. The WattStation Connect software offers the
flexibility of different packages (fleet, corporate and commercial) and
customizable payment options.
* GE's WattStation Connect mobile app enables EV owners to locate stations,
see station availability, pay for charging their vehicle and check the
status of the charge while their vehicle is charging. The mobile app will
be available at the Apple iTunes Store® and Android™ Market. Radio
Frequency Identification (RFID) technology provides secure access to the
* Through the GE EV Certified Installer program, users can tap into GE's
network of service providers for the assistance they need to make their EV
charging projects a reality.
* Placing safety first, with ground fault protection and NEMA 3R
indoor/outdoor rating, GE's WattStation meets all UL and fire safety
"GE has a full range of electrical distribution products required to support
EV deployment and to move power from the grid to the road, helping our
customers operate in a smarter, more networked world," added Mahan. "Our EV
charging solutions offer a variety of options that make sense for you and your
community. Whether you need durability, modern style, freestanding units,
software-enabled or simple charging functionality, GE has designed leading
technology for the delivery, management, conversion and optimization of
electrical power and can connect you to the most effective, convenient
solution for you."
To earn ecomagination approval, a product is evaluated for its ability to
significantly and measurably improve the customer's environmental and
operating performance. Green Order, a consulting firm, helps verify the
rigorous, multi-tiered qualification process to ensure accuracy and thorough
documentation of technological performance.
For more information on GE Energy's EV solutions, please visit its website,
check it out on Facebook or follow on Twitter @GEindustrial.
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