J.D. Power finds Tesla still leading the pack for EV mobile apps

JD Power released its first benchmark study on satisfaction and user experience with electric vehicle smartphone apps.

The study focused on electric vehicles, as more than 50 per cent of EV owners use their brands at least half of the time they drive. In contrast, gas car owners use their apps significantly less.

The study found that:

  • 70 per cent of EV owners used their apps to monitor their charging status.
  • 85 per cent desire the ability to find a charging station while on the road via their app
  • 32 per cent of drivers have never used their app as they do not know how to use it

Further to this, the study found that owners want more applications, and only eight features were available on almost all of the apps out there. Advanced features such as a phone as a key are also wanted but not offered widely.

Many owners do not want to pay extra for access to an app. In fact, the primary reason that owners stop using their app is that the free trial expires.

According to Fabian Chowantez, director of automotive consulting, the new players on the auto market are struggling with their apps.

New EV start-ups need to better understand consumer expectations, ensuring that their mobile apps meet the standards of established EV manufacturers like Tesla and other brands that already put a lot of work in their digital offerings. Many of these new players in the EV market are not providing the necessary app content that owners are seeking. For example, owners want the ability to find charging stations, set up the charging process and information on electric driving or advanced technology.

According to the benchmarking, the top-performing EV apps were:

  • Tesla
  • FordPass
  • MyHyundai
  • Kia Access
  • Genesis Intelligent Assistant
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