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Chargeplace Scotland changing from Charge your Car to SWARCO eVolt

22610 Views 259 Replies 32 Participants Last post by  Duncan
News has just hit that Chargeplace Scotland (CPS) who have used Charge your Car for their authentication and billing for the last several years will be switching to SWARCO eVolt starting in July:

This is an interesting albeit not unexpected change. What does it mean for end users?

Will existing RFID cards continue to work or do we need new ones? Will CPS accounts (which are basically just CYC accounts and use the same CYC app) be migrated across or will we be needing to create new accounts?

Will CPS cards stop working on CYC sites in England and will CYC cards stop working on CPS sites in Scotland?

Will CPS finally get their own mobile app instead of just using the CYC branded app and a fairly useless web browser based lookup?

While I of course recognise eVolt and a lot of rapids on the CPS network are already eVolt units, I have no knowledge of their ability to run a back end authentication and billing system, although they're unlikely to be worse than CYC.

So, good news? Bad news? Ambivalent ? :unsure: To be honest it's quite a while since I've used a CPS charger!
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Seems now from the most recent CPS email that the app won't launch until 2nd August, leaving those without an RFID card in limbo for a week. Also seems activation emails will be staggered over 48 hours. Week commencing 26th July is going to be a mess for me... This isn't the great start I'd hoped for from SWARCO / E-volt. Multiple social media posts / tweets assured a 27th July app launch and now, with 3 days to go, they move the goalposts! :mad:
I’m heading up to Scotland at the end of next week to see my mum for the first time in 18 months. Hoping that they are using the existing Swarco back office system so I can use my Be.EV rfid card or their app. Have seen the question asked on FB about Be.EV cards and the response was “hopefully”. Got some credit banked with Instavolt if I can’t use the free ones near my mum.
Somebody asked that question on twitter today.

The reply didn't sound too hopeful:



Robert, we are working on that but initially we will be ensuring that all ChargePlace Scotland members RFID cards work first. Onbce we have a stable network then we will develop the reach.
Yeah, doesn’t sound good. It does feel like they may have created a separate back office system for CPS, instead of integrating with the existing Swarco system. Which seems costly and silly to me when their existing system already works and integrates Be.Ev, MFG and other brands on the same system.
For me the issue is one of messaging. I'm new to the EV scene, but quite quickly learned that the current administration of CPS is very poor. SWARCO have been on point with messaging and responsive to tweets and social media posts. For a month they've assured the public that they'll provide a smooth transition with a day 1 app available for those without the RFID card.

Had I known about their new timeframes a month ago, I could have ordered my RFID card and avoided not being able to charge. But with 3 day's notice, it's not possible. I take it something has went a bit wrong somewhere along the line quite late on.
Exactly. I too was planning to use the app, with my Be.EV card as a backup and now no app and unlikely that the card will work.

I don’t have experience of working with chargers, but I do have experience of working with IT systems and this seems a bit botched to me. Swarco have had months to plan and test their systems and they have an existing system that works so this is not their first rodeo. However we don’t know the way the handover has been structured, so it could well be CYC that have handicapped the transition as a final kick in the teeth to CPS users.
@SCA1972 I've just signed upto InstaVolt with your referral code in anticipation of having to pay a few charges come next week! (y)
Thank you. I’m also anticipating the same at the end of next week.

Also got a VW We Charge card on the way, just in case I need to use Ionity at Gretna (or Polmadie if it is operational) so I’m not paying full price.
OK, are you moaning on behalf of yourself or some other generic users.
The communications have been pretty good. Are you making journeys on the 27th, 28th, 29th. Can these be delayed.Can you take advantage of alternative charging, at work, at your destination.
General principal is one the same as making an omelette.
So is it saving a few pounds that is driving the angst.
I will be travelling up to Scotland on the 28th or 29th. As previously stated haven’t been able to visit my mum for 18 months, so not keen to delay my trip further.
I can’t charge at my mum’s and the nearest chargers to her are all CPS chargers so cost saving is part of it but was also convenience. There is a CPS rapid 5 minutes walk away and some fast chargers about 15 minutes walk. Next nearest are an Instavolt then an Osprey which are not within walking distance. I’m 3700 miles into my EV ownership and haven’t paid for a charge yet, which helps offset the large outlay to purchase the car.:)

Good man, contingency plans👍
Always had contingency plans as this is will be my first big EV trip and I’m unfamiliar with the charger reliability on route. I know what the local chargers are like down here as I don’t have the option of home charging, so visit them regularly.
Not paying a charge is not really a sustainable position. Vast majority of CPS chargers are not free.
CPS seem to disagree with you about the vast majority not being free:

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Be.EV app is completely blank for me just now.
You are not alone. The MFG app map is also blank.

I have a mental image of someone in a data centre fixing the CPS comms issue by swapping an Ethernet cable from one server to another and thereby messing up the other Swarco stuff.;)

I’m trying to give them a chance, but this feels very amateurish to me.
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I used a free CPS rapid in Biggar this morning and started the charge with my Be.EV RFID card. Initially tried the app, which I got from the Play store before it was removed and got a “not valid RFID card” error when I tried to start a charge.
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Successfully charging just now using the play store app on Android that was available earlier in the week.

I was hoping that the RFID card may have arrived this morning in the post, but no joy yet.
Good to hear. I’m up here for a few days, so I’ll give the app another try on some other chargers. Maybe the one in Biggar had lost contact with the mothership.

I ended up getting way more charge than I needed while helping a confused iPace driver struggling with the other rapid on the site.
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