Is user segment specialization, like hazmat, pharma, cold chain the way to go forward for the telematics industry service providers in India? Our recent discussion with many of the senior industry leaders in Mumbai and Bangalore says so. Will domain specialization lead to better margins and industry move above and away from the cost+ market?
Next, it seems that the numbers are now coming in. Last year, we had a telematics service provider, who in single order created a milestone for many to follow. Its now the turn for other telematics service providers to follow it. Not literally in the getting a contract order with similar number in one go, but going by month-on-month basis there are few telematics service providers, who are continuously moving up the chain. Industry seems to be going by the old saying, ‘Eat the elephant bit by bit’.
Vehicle tracking ecosystem is not dependent upon imports from China and Far East Asia. There are some good hardware manufacturing with global presence, into the vehicle telematics hardware business and doing good in India also. Although it was not good to see Teltonika go the way downstream, particularly when it was getting market acceptance.
Lack of standardization on behalf of service providers, seems to be putting transporter into a tough spot. In an example shared by a senior industry professional, a transporter providing its trucks to automotive companies to carry their vehicle, has more than two tracking devices fitted in its vehicle. Depending upon the automobile manufacturer the respective tracking device is switched on. Not a desirable situation. Seems there is a need for the telematics industry people to discuss standardization of products and services.
Industry consolidation is underway, with mergers and acquisitions taking place. We have seen in past and in recent times. There are more so in process and we hope this will strengthen the foundation of telematics industry in India.
Insurance telematics seems to be getting closer to reality with one more initiative after Policy Bazaar, this time it is Liberty Videocon Insurance who will be carrying out a pilot project in couple of metros in India.
Vodafone, which joined hands with Mahindra & Mahindra for their connected car initiative, is now looking at larger role in the telematics industry with their GSM based tracking which can cover good number of application verticals. More so, we hope its services in insurance telematics too would be made available soon in India and bring the much needed focus on the ‘driving habit’.