Rivian Acquires A Higher Routeplanner, Shortly Integrates It In OTA Replace, Commits To Holding ABRP Open

In a current announcement, Rivian instructed the EV world that it purchased a key route planning software program firm: A Higher Routeplanner (ABRP). Earlier than I dig into the announcement, I wish to clarify why EV route planning issues. Then, I’ll get into some necessary particulars present ABRP customers will wish to know.

Why Route Planning Software program Is A Key Asset For EV Producers

In a gas-powered automotive, it’s fairly simple to go on journeys. Begin your journey with a full tank, after which when it begins to get low, search for fuel stations. Each little city alongside the freeway tends to have at the least one fuel station, so there’s little danger of getting stranded.

Alternatively, EV route planning presents new challenges, corresponding to restricted driving vary, much less widespread charging infrastructure, various charging speeds and compatibility, and the necessity to optimize power consumption. Components like elevation adjustments, climate circumstances, and driving type can impression an EV’s power consumption, and drivers should take these into consideration when planning a route.

I don’t learn about you, however I’m not a mathematician. So, I depend on software program to plan my journeys and issue all of this into determining whether or not I’ll get there or get caught charging at an RV park or driving in a tow truck. Clever route planning makes use of real-time information on charging station places, compatibility, and availability to create optimum routes primarily based on the driving force’s preferences and the automobile’s specs. Superior algorithms estimate power consumption alongside the route, factoring in parts like elevation, climate, and driving habits to assist drivers plan extra successfully.

Good software program goes above and past the fundamentals. Actual-time updates on site visitors circumstances, highway closures, and charging station availability enable drivers to regulate their route on-the-go if wanted. Some EV route planning software program may even join instantly with the automobile’s onboard programs, offering seamless navigation and charging station suggestions primarily based on the automobile’s present state of cost.

There are a selection of competing software program packages on the market that may do that. For those who drive a Tesla, nice software program is constructed proper into the automotive. For those who’re like me and drive one other model’s EV, your expertise could be wherever from utilizing dangerous software program to not having this software program out there in any respect.

My first theoretically roadtrip-capable EV was a 2018 Nissan LEAF (with the 40 kWh battery pack that overheats). I realized the exhausting means that EPA vary means completely nothing on highway journeys, and that not planning for issues like steep hill climbs and freeway speeds could be an sudden vary killer. The bottom mannequin I had (S-trim) didn’t have something however a fundamental bluetooth head unit, and no touchscreen, however even when I had a greater one, journey planning software program is tremendous fundamental.

So, I needed to discover one other answer for planning highway journeys. After attempting a number of completely different apps and web sites, the one I discovered the be essentially the most correct (at the least in 2018) was A Higher Routeplanner.

Whereas automakers have dropped the ball, ABRP made up for his or her ineptitude. Not solely did it assist almost all EVs, however it built-in each charging firm information and information from your personal automobile in case you hyperlink it up through the online or an OBD-II connector (through a Bluetooth dongle). Thus, it has develop into a significant software for a lot of EV homeowners.

Rivian Isn’t Going To Take That Away From Anyone

When the rumors began flying, I talked to any individual I do know at ABRP. They instructed me that they weren’t promoting to anyone until they dedicated to maintaining the software program out there for all EV drivers, which was a giant aid for me, as a result of the MyChevrolet journey planner is fairly terrible regardless of supposedly studying automobile energy utilization information.

When Rivian introduced the acquisition, that was one of many huge issues it reiterated within the announcement. “…we’re dedicated to persevering with its improvement for all EV drivers.” the corporate stated.

If something, it appears probably that elevated sources will assist make A Higher Routeplanner higher and extra user-friendly, and will result in it changing into a built-in app for extra producers sooner or later.

They Built-in It Into Rivian’s In-Sprint Software program Fairly Quick

As we’re reported earlier than, ABRP and its mother or father firm Iternio (additionally bought by Rivian) is already within the enterprise of supporting in-dash integration of its software program. One good instance is its take care of Skoda to do precisely that.

Many have been shocked on the velocity at which Rivian added ABRP’s options into its software program, however given its present experience in that space, it shouldn’t be an enormous shock.

Like common ABRP, Rivian drivers now have the flexibility to not solely plan journeys within the sprint, however plan them on different units forward of time and save them to their Rivian account for later navigation. So, planning complicated journeys the place charging infrastructure is proscribed doesn’t require sitting and doing in of their automobiles.

How This Impacts The Future Of The Rivian Journey Community

Along with constructing automobiles, Rivian has one other trick up its sleeve: the Journey Community. The corporate lately introduced that it is going to be switching to the NACS (Tesla) plug for automobile charging, and this may finally embody the Journey Community stations.

However, one of many nice strengths of Tesla just isn’t solely its charging community, however the entire information it collects. Whereas Rivian received’t get that sort of information from ABRP, it nonetheless provides it useful info.

“Past route planning, the information insights on the place there’s inadequate dependable charging will assist us strategically plan the place we prioritize constructing our Rivian Journey Community.” stated RJ Scaringe, Rivian Chief Govt Officer.

So, that is going to be a giant enchancment not just for Rivian and its route planning capabilities, but additionally for all EV drivers who use the Journey Community and ABRP (both instantly or by an organization partnership).

Different Automakers Would Be Smart To Associate With ABRP, Even If Rivian Owns It

Whereas I do know many individuals choose different route planning apps, I personally actually like each the convenience of use and the superior capabilities ABRP already gives.

Positive, different firms might rent employees and construct their very own route planning software program, however that takes numerous money and time simply to proceed to be behind the leaders. Or, they may benefit from not solely what ABRP has constructed, however what Rivian goes to do to make it even higher.


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