The future is calling, and recent events have shown that the future is EVs. Countries worldwide are pushing to ban gas-powered vehicles, such as China, France, the U.K., Spain, and Norway. There’s only one problem in this idealistic, green future—infrastructure. Technology has to rise and meet the demand for EVs. Otherwise, we’ll all be left with a pile of dead ones and nowhere to charge them. This is where ZIGGY comes in saving you a parking spot to charge up in.
Updates to EV infrastructure feel painfully slow, but some companies are innovating ways to make the transition easier.
What is the ZIGGY robot, and how does it work by saving you a parking spot?
Slated for a 2023 release, ZIGGY is an autonomous mobile charger that comes to you. According to EV Safe Charge‘s product video, the journey begins with the ZIGGY mobile app. You choose the location you want to go to, and the mobile charger will drive to an open parking spot and reserve it.
Then, once you drive to the location, the robot will move out of the way so you can park your car. After you’ve parked, you can take your phone, confirm that you’d like to charge it, plug it in, and then you’re done. You can go on about your day while ZIGGY charges your EV.
When you’re done, all you need to do is unplug and go. ZIGGY will move on to charge another EV. Or, if it’s running low on battery, it will return to its home base and charge automatically via clean energy sources like solar power.
According to Electrek, the company will make money via a Charging-as-a-Service (CaaS) model. This offloads the responsibilities of clients to provide their own chargers. Instead, everything you need is packaged into a single price, including the robots, tech support, and maintenance.
What challenges is ZIGGY designed to address?
As mentioned, technology has to rise to meet the growing demand for EVs. Unfortunately, it’s not as simple as just buying more chargers. Chargers, especially fast chargers, are costly.
According to Realtor.com, Level 2 chargers cost around $1,700 minimum for the charger and installation. Now, imagine installing Level 2 chargers for an entire parking lot of 100 spaces—that’s $170,000. And that’s all without considering increased utility bills, maintenance, technical support, and other day-to-day expenses.
While there is no exact pricing information on ZIGGY yet, the CaaS model is designed to be more affordable than the alternative of buying chargers upfront. The lease model allows property owners to pay a much smaller price to get the necessary infrastructure. If the technology takes off, it could significantly impact the state of EV infrastructure worldwide.
The rise of autonomous robots
Autonomous robots seem to have a significant impact on the future. Pretty soon, everything from your mail to your grocery deliveries might be automated.
Grocery delivery robots are already making the rounds in the U.K. A few have gotten lost along the way, but the small number of deliveries they’ve completed so far has been largely successful. Even better, they’re zero-carbon robots that use very little energy. With their slow speed, they’re not a danger to anyone that passes by.
We should also talk about mail delivery robots. Given the shortage of truck drivers plaguing the last-mile delivery industry for years, it’s high time people found a solution. Mail delivery robots are designed to cut out trucks altogether. Instead, they deliver packages individually and automatically calculate the route.