The advent of electric vehicles (EVs) has been closely intertwined with the emergence of connected vehicles. Despite the growing reliance on mobile apps in conjunction with EVs, owners have expressed their dissatisfaction with the most vital app functionalities, according to a recent report by J.D. Power.
The report highlights the need for automakers and software developers to allocate more attention to the aspects of their apps that are frequently utilized by owners, rather than primarily focusing on aesthetics. Jason Norton, Senior Manager of Global Automotive Consulting at J.D. Power, emphasizes the importance of enhancing the performance of key areas that matter most to EV owners, in order to optimize their impact and elevate the overall user experience.
While users tend to be highly satisfied with the visual appeal of EV apps across automakers, they assert that this factor holds limited importance. Instead, users place greater value on speed and ease of navigation, which currently rank among the lowest in terms of satisfaction.
Furthermore, more than a third (37%) of EV app users reported encountering connectivity issues in the past 30 days. These frustrating disruptions have seen an increase compared to the previous year, when only 32% reported experiencing outages within the same timeframe.
These obstacles indicate that automakers must realign their efforts with the areas that users deem most significant. This endeavor is crucial for EV manufacturers, as customers cite a well-designed mobile app as a determining factor in their purchasing decisions.
J.D. Power's findings reveal that Tesla leads the segment in user satisfaction with its mobile app, with 59% of owners stating that it moderately influenced their decision to purchase a Tesla, and 21% claiming it had a major impact. Nevertheless, mobile apps for EVs serve more than just showcasing technological advancements; they offer invaluable utility to EV owners. In fact, 68% of EV owners rely on their app to monitor charging progress and available range, utilizing it during nearly every other drive.
While Tesla ranks highest among automakers (scoring 838 out of 1,000), other brands such as Mercedes (833), Hyundai (827), and BMW (815) are in close pursuit. However, the industry average remains disappointingly low at 741, largely due to underperforming brands like Polestar (571) and Audi (571).
In conclusion, the rise of electric vehicles necessitates a renewed focus on the development of user-centric EV apps. Automakers must prioritize the performance and functionality that align with user preferences, enhancing speed, ease of navigation, and overall user experience. By addressing these crucial areas, automakers can maximize the impact of their EV apps, entice potential buyers, and reinforce customer satisfaction in the fast-growing electric vehicle market.