Accelerate Customer Satisfaction in the Electric Vehicle Industry with Infrared Touch Technology
Electric vehicle (EV) charging ports are cropping up like daisies, but designing a seamless charging experience with hardware strong enough to withstand the elements is tricky. Discover how rugged infrared touch technology can help, no matter the weather.
Between 2019 and 2022 EV sales grew by a whopping 43% globally, and in 2021, electric vehicles accounted for 17% of Europe’s overall car sales.
The industry is showing no signs of pumping the breaks, and subsequently, major car manufacturers are ramping up deployments of EV charging stations in key markets to support this explosion in growth.
With electric vehicles, the challenge is not just about designing a smooth, energy-efficient driver experience. As is usually the case in automotive, the goal is for the whole customer journey to be optimized for comfort, not just the car seats. The EV industry also needs to deliver on its promises of a better, greener driving experience from start to end.
However, inconsistency of experience when using EV charging ports and other hardware problems are common. According to a recent study, EV drivers found 25% of public EV chargers to be unusable due to broken connectors, network failures, payment system failures, and unresponsive screens.
Damaged screens and buttons are also cited as a key issue when it comes to car charging, and as we all know, using touchscreens outdoors if it’s raining or you’re wearing gloves is never a fun experience. But designing charging ports that are easy to use outdoors isn’t easy. This business-critical technology must also be built to be durable and robust, ideally without adding more electrical components.
As the old proverb goes: you’re only as strong as your weakest link. Creating ports that are guaranteed to operate well outdoors means all components must be able to endure harsh environments, whether that means heat, rain, humidity, bright sunlight, freezing temperatures or repeated use.
Thankfully, when it comes to screens and buttons for EV charging ports, there’s a smart, solution that is easy to integrate into outdoor displays.
Guarantee seamless interactions with charging ports, come rain, shine or snowstorm
Neonode’s touch technology guarantees seamless human-machine interactions and ensures that any screen remains responsive whether its freezing, scorching, or raining.
In extreme environments, Neonode zForce Blocking solution provides stable and responsive interaction, even in rain and temperatures of -40°C to +80°C. As well as being weather-proof, it’s also resistant to electromagnetic interference and can be used while wearing gloves - perfect for chilly days. It works by emitting infrared light across a designated interactive area, and when a portion of the light is blocked by a finger, the position is calculated with sub-millimeter accuracy to make interaction possible. It uses minimal components, making it a cost effective solution for high-volume applications.
Neonode’s Touch Sensor Module offer similar benefits, but the plug-and-play modules make it even easier to implement in new or even existing EV charging stations. Available in a range of lengths, the touch and size works on any surface and it is tailored for ultra-low latency and power consumption. It can be customized to fit any resolution, and both vertical or horizontal integration is possible for design flexibility.
For charging ports that don’t have screens, with the same technology, manufacturers can make any material, surface or display fully interactive such as polycarbonate resins, which are inherently robust, have good impact resistance and UL94 flame retardancy, along with electrical insulation properties that can be tailored to meet product safety standards. It also eliminates the need for buttons and additional components that may need to be fixed and replaced due to ongoing wear and tear.
The best part? This technology has limitless applications. For example, gas station pumps, car parking meters, and outdoor pick-up boxes. These everyday conveniences for drivers come under constant use, and in some places of the world, stand in freezing temperatures. By using Neonode technology, customers can order and pay for goods and services by easily tapping a screen or surface whatever the weather – without pushing any physical buttons.
More durability, with more flexibility
Solutions like infrared touch bring more flexibility and creativity to industrial design, opening up new ways to build and interact with equipment in outdoor environments.
Whatever materials, surfaces or application you’re working with, our technology can help you improve human-to-machine interactions in a simple, cost-effective way.Learn More About Infrared Touch