Tesla Motors’ forthcoming home batteries, expected to be revealed on April 30, might only be leased to the general public instead of sold, as reported by The Guardian. The batteries could be capable of powering a whole house and could also be efficient in storing power generated through renewable sources such as solar and wind.
Batteries with multiple uses
Reportedly, some of these batteries have already been rented to about 300 customers of SolarCity, of which Tesla CEO Elon Musk is chairman. Trip Chowdhry, an analyst who claims to have met some of these customers at a trade show, offered insight into the home batteries. According to the analyst, the battery pack is available in 10 and 15 Kwh configurations and is predicted to cost around $13,000, though an energy company has tendered a subsidy of up to 50% on this price. Prospective customers can finance the pack for an initial down payment of $1,500 followed by ten monthly installments of $15 per year.
Moreover, the batteries are said to be based on a UPS system and are expected to be big enough to power a whole house, especially in case of a power outage. Further, the pack is suggested to have a number of uses for the average customer. For the ones who are more digitally-oriented, the batteries could provide an instant source of power for their phones and personal computers. In addition, it is a useful expense for people who spend about $100-$150 per month on their data services.
Tesla to face competition
Along with this, the home battery could provide a significant revenue opportunity for Tesla, which has been spending heavily on its battery factory that is being built in Nevada. But according to analyst Jeff Kegan, battery power still has certain limitations as devices today require a lot of power to operate. Besides, there exists other cheaper sources of power such as hydrogen fuel cells, which cost five times less than a pure battery system.
Further, Tesla is also expected to experience some competition from other battery-makers. One of such company is General Electric, which recently decided to increase its investment in electricity storage devices. However, Tesla’s unique marketing schemes and attractive products are expected to provide the EV carmaker an upper hand over other rivals. For now, Tesla’s battery has already found applications in the offices of Google and Apple, according to Chowdhry. In addition, there have been reports suggesting that Walmart is also seeking battery services from Tesla.