Competition in the electric two-wheeler space continues to intensify with every passing day, and to keep up with its rivals, Ather Energy has now unveiled a Diwali gift for all its customers – starting 15 November, owners of the Ather 450X, Ather 450 Plus, and 450 electric scooters will have access to all the connectivity features one can use on an Ather e-scooter, free of cost, for the next six months.
At present, Ather offers its customers two subscription plans to choose from – Ather Connect Lite and Ather Connect Pro. The Connect Lite plan costs Rs 400 per three months and only enables onboard navigation and over-the-air dashboard updates, while Connect Pro costs Rs 700 per three months and adds ride statistics on the Ather smartphone app, remote location tracking, remote charge monitoring, and push location function from the app.
Ather is granting all new and existing customers free access to the Connect Pro plan till 15 May 2022, hoping that more customers will see the value in these services and opt to pay for these services at the end of the complimentary six-month subscription. For customers who already have an active Connect Lite/Pro subscription, Ather says it will reimburse the amount ‘on a pro-rata basis. Its refund mechanisms will take a couple of weeks to operationalize, post which the company will begin intimating customers.
“As we expand across the country and welcome more owners to the community, we want everyone to experience what it feels like to ride and own a connected & intelligent scooter. And get the hang of the possibilities that lie shortly. We don’t want the cost of a subscription pack to come in the way of the connected experience”, said Ather about its decision to extend this free subscription to customers.
Stating that ‘connectivity and EVs go hand in hand,’ Ather Energy chief Tarun Mehta said Ather customers could expect ‘several changes’ as the start-up works to improve quality, rebuilds the system UI, and adds more features to the scooters.
Ather recently rolled out the Atherstack Borg (10.2.0) OTA update for 450X and 450 Plus owners, and the most prominent feature added with this update is theft and tow detection. Other enhancements include improved accuracy of live location, the addition of Ather Grid charging sessions in the ride logs with added support for Ather Grid 2.0, and Bluetooth staying connected even when the dashboard restarts. In terms of bug fixes, the network icon disappearance issue is said to be resolved, and Ather promises there will be no further instances of navigation continuing despite the scooter being parked.
Ather Energy is ramping up its operations across India as electric two-wheeler sales continue to rise with every passing day. Thanks to hefty state subsidies, the Ather 450X and 450 Plus are now even more affordable than before and presently retail for their lowest prices anywhere in India in the state of Maharashtra. The manufacturer is currently working on ramping up production capacity at its plant to 500,000 units a year by FY2023 (up from the 1.1 lakh unit capacity at present. By April 2022, Ather plans to have 500 charging points across India and set up shop in 50 cities, including several Tier-II locations. That number is set to rise to 100 cities by April 2023.