As a followup to my previous post about EV charging stations, I’ll share here that I received both of my charging network membership cards in today’s mail.
The Blink Network InCard came in a nice, plain, green-looking, 100% post-consumer, soy ink-printed, foldout envelope, with the plastic card nestled inside. The printed instructions were so simple and minimal, I felt like I was deboxing an Apple iPad. The InCard is thin like a credit card, and has my bar coded member serial and Blink customer service number printed on the back, but is minus the magnetic stripe. I immediately logged into my blinknetwork.com account and activated my card, and then called the customer service number to ask a couple questions. The Blink agent confirmed the InCard contains an imbedded RFID device, and stated that all Blink chargers are presently free, but will begin debiting member accounts for electrons sometime during the Spring of 2012.
The ChargePass card from the ChargePoint Network (Coulomb Technologies) arrived gorilla-snotted to a glossy pamphlet that was more Redmond than Cupertino, although helpfully informative. The ChargePass card also has a bar coded membership serial and customer service number printed on the back, but is slightly thicker than a credit card, and obviously has an RFID device hiding inside. After activating my ChargePass online, I called the number on the back of the card. The friendly customer service agent from Mumbai explained that the card would cause the charging plug to release from the holster, and would direct the charging station to debit my account about one dollar per hour of charge. Now that I am a card-carrying citizen of the electrosphere, the world is my oyster, but like any meal, it seems it will be cheaper to eat at home.