The Internet of Things, or IoT, is widely considered as a technological milestone and has become one of the most influential innovations of the 21st century. From simple everyday objects to sophisticated machinery, IoT has connected many devices to the Internet on an unprecedented level, giving us a glimpse of the future with endless possibilities. If someone came up with an idea of a “smart frying pan” 30 years ago, people would probably laugh at the very idea, but today, we have smart frying pans that can be accessed remotely over the Internet, along with almost every kitchen appliance that you can think of.
The Internet of Things is a revolutionary technology because it can be applied to anything and it doesn’t even have to be a smart device or a machine. With the increasing accessibility of the Internet all over the world, connected smart devices such as mobile devices have become more popular than ever. Naturally, this resulted in significantly reduced costs as well as rapid development in many IoT subsystems such as industrial manufacturing and GPS-based IoT applications.
What is the role of IoT in vehicle tracking?
A vast network of connected devices and enhanced data exchange capabilities provide the perfect platform for businesses to implement their GPS-based tracking and management systems with IoT. Vehicle tracking systems mainly operate on GPS and RFID technologies and use OBD-II ports to acquire information about the vehicle’s condition. The compatibility of these systems with the IoT applications paved the way for tech companies to create tailor-made solutions for daily challenges of business operations.
Tracking the movements of a vehicle fleet, rerouting service personnel to customers in need, providing accurate ETAs for shipments and dispatching vehicles more efficiently are among the many tasks of a fleet executive. Putting all these into practice and performing at a high level is easier said than done. The Internet of Things is a perfect match for vehicle tracking systems for many reasons but the superior connectivity and accelerated data transfer speeds take the effectiveness of GPS-based applications to the next level.
Business operations are logistical nightmares; planning and coordinating the movements of hundreds of vehicles is an impossible task without the right set of tools and actionable information. As one of the major benefits that set commercial and private usage apart, the operational efficiency of vehicle tracking systems can be immensely improved by adopting IoT. Connecting the GPS-based tracking devices with an advanced network and transmitting data at greater speeds will be critical in making informed decisions based on the data at hand and responding to emergencies. Many tools such as real-time tracking, instant alerts, geofence zones and route optimisation can be enhanced with IoT and help streamline business operations. Normally, GPS and RFID technologies are enough to collect and transmit data for operational data requirements. IoT can be used to improve the data flow between the tracking devices, cloud-based data servers and executives who rely on the GPS and telematics information.
One of the most significant advantages of GPS technology has been the financial benefits it brings to the table for both individuals and businesses. A simple vehicle tracking unit can help a daily commuter to lower their fuel usage significantly while an insurance tracker, as the name suggests, ensures the best rates from insurance providers by simply installing them into their vehicles. IoT’s role in this equation is the extra security benefits for cars, predictive maintenance for vehicles and the critical role in locating vehicles more quickly by providing a more efficient data network. In the long run, IoT’s advanced capabilities can save companies hundreds of thousands if not millions. A single truck’s untimely breakdown during a haul or the theft of a valuable shipment can cost a company tens of thousands of dollars, not to mention the damage to the company’s reputation.
These days, insurance companies pretty much demand for commercial vehicles to be fitted with a tracking device, but they also offer massive discounts because of the additional protection these systems provide. However, having multiple layers of security doesn’t really mean anything if the situation can’t be handled in a timely manner. Whether it is a theft attempt or a vehicle malfunction, GPS tracking devices detect the emergency within seconds and relay the information to the responsible parties. If the information flow is not fast enough, the response to the emergency can be delayed. At which point, it can be too late to recover a stolen cargo or the damage to the vehicle is un-salvagable. IoT technology can ensure that the data flow is seamless and faster than ever for GPS-based systems. Having an advanced network of devices with better data exchange capabilities can significantly increase the response times to emergencies and prevent the situation to get out of hand.
IoT is still evolving and will continue to grow, providing us with even more innovative ways to access and control devices remotely. It is very much possible in less than a few years, and we will have voice-controlled IoT apps that allow us to control our homes, vehicles and all inter-connected devices with a simple voice command. Right now, we are at the precipice of a great change in connected device technology with a global market of around $250 billion. IoT solutions are expected to reach over $1.5 trillion by 2025, and it says a lot about the potential of this ground-breaking innovation. Although primarily designed and integrated into the consumer electronics market, IoT already expanded beyond smartphones and home appliances. The Internet of Things will reshape entire business industries over the years, but GPS-based tracking systems are one of the few technologies in the world that will benefit the most.
Ekim Saribardak is a highly motivated IT professional who possesses a never-ending love and passion for web application and software projects. He is experienced with technical knowledge in all areas of telecommunications, GPS technology, web applications, digital marketing and product management, with an aptitude for problem-solving and decision-making with the ability to influence others in complex and pressurized circumstances. He has been a technology geek since 1990, starting from the moment he first had his hands on a computer. Since then, he has been researching and studying anything related to computers, fascinated with the way computers are changing everyday life. He has worked in both hardware and software fields for different businesses for over two decades.
Published in Telematics Wire