A Bird’s Eye View of the Evolution of Vehicle Tracking and Fleet Management System

Vehicle tracking system has gained tremendous traction in the past few years. It is being adopted at a rapid pace in developed as well as developing countries. Even though it seems like a new technology and application, you would be surprised to know that Oldsmobile introduced the first GPS navigation system available in a United States production car, called GuideStar in 1995. So, it has been more than 20 years since this technology has been introduced.

The big question here is that why has it taken so much time for it to become omnipresent? There are some obvious reasons behind this such as –

  • Cost of production has come down.
  • Awareness has increased.
  • Buying power has risen.

But we strongly feel that there is one other major reason which surpasses all others – the evolution and advancement of technology. With the advent of technologies such as the Internet of Things(IoT), data analytics, cloud computing and so on, the simple vehicle tracking system has evolved into a comprehensive solution. Let us delve a little deeper into this.
Earlier what was present in the market was a very basic vehicle tracking system which only provided information about the vehicle location. Due to the poor internet connection, a lot of times that location was also not updated in real time. We are sure that at that time, no one would have even thought that such a simple system could come so far. Do you know that in the present day and age the system has evolved to an extent where a detailed analysis of driver behaviour is also available? Do you know that sitting in your office/home, you can get real-time updates for refuel as well fuel theft? IoT has been one of the major contributors in bringing about this sea change. It has now become possible to gather data remotely, without any wired connections and then store it in the cloud. IoT has also made it possible the integration of different sensors. Having said all this, data analytics has contributed in a big way to help make proper use of the collected data. Instead of a reporting platform, all service providers are moving towards in-depth analysis and trends.

There are a lot of international as well as national players in this field. Fleetmatics, GPS Police, Telogis are some of the industry movers and shakers. They have been ruling this industry for a long time and still continue to do that. Apart from these companies, there are a lot of players in the Indian market also such as AssetTrackr, LetsTrack, Loconov, Arya Omnitalk and so on. One more budding company which aims to disrupt the way fleets are operated through its comprehensive and customizable fleet management solutions is IoTRL’s FleetConnect. IoT Research Labs is an IoT powered analytics-driven fleet management company.

IoT Research Labs operates under the moto – A Journey Beyond Tracking. With the combination of our devices and sensors, we provide a variety of features such as –

  • Driver behaviour analysis – safety and efficiency based score for each driver based on instances of harsh acceleration, harsh braking, harsh cornering, over speeding and idling time.
  • Turn Around Time(TAT) Analysis – Complete analysis of forward and return turn TAT highlighting areas of concern.
  • Fuel Monitoring – Graphical representation of fuel consumption coupled with real-time alerts for fuel theft as well as refuel. This can lead to a yearly saving of about 6L rupees per truck.
  • Temperature Monitoring – Analysis of temperature inside a refrigerated truck with real-time alerts on threshold breach.

These solutions have a very high Return on Investment (ROI). Some of the solutions will help you recover the money in the first month itself. In addition, they also have a direct impact on the profitability of the firm. The solutions have proven to have a 10-15% impact on the profitability of a lot of firms. The modern vehicle tracking systems are coming with a lot of additional features such as –

  • API Integration
  • RFID/Biometric Integration
  • Load Monitoring

We envisage that an extremely eventful future lies ahead of the vehicle tracking industry. We firmly believe that technologies such as Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) will bring about the next major revolution in this field.
We foresee a future that would move towards a preventive system rather than the reactive one. To make it a little simple, let us give you an example. Currently, one can only provide real-time alerts for fuel theft. In the future, it is highly likely that one would be able to predict instances of fuel theft and prevent them from happening. This is just one example, think of the multiple ramifications that this simple prevention mechanism can have.
Even though it may seem a little far-fetched right now, this is surely possible when machines are learning patterns and responding automatically. Some of the basic benefits that we can think of right now are –
Decreased instances of pilferage/theft
Reduced downtime through preventive maintenance
Prior alerts/notifications to drivers/owners
We are extremely excited to not only be a part of this future but also act as a catalyst.