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What Is Telematics?

Telematics, also known as Fleet Management System, is a network that allows devices to send, receive and communicate data via mobile yet connected objects. It is a combination of ‘Telecommunications’ and ‘Informatics’. Telematics is software that involves monitoring cars, equipment, trucks (or any other vehicle of your choice) by using GPS technology and On-Board Diagnostics (OBD). Telematics is now an essential component of fleet management. Not only commercial but also government fleets opt for telematics technology for their operations. Globally, it is gathering crucial information and slowly reforming the way fleet management works in the world.

What is a Telematics System?

In fleet management, Telematics allows vehicles to transmit live information to the managers and operators in real-time. Fleet telematics usually has two components – the stationery fleet communication system and the mobile vehicle system, and both are easy to understand and install. A telematics device will not simply track your vehicle and keep tabs on its location. It will also aid in relaying relevant information about your fleet to your organization- fuel consumption, tire pressure, speeding, harsh braking, vehicle faults- you name it, and it will remain accessible even in a year or two.

The fleet communication system is used either by an internet service operator managed by the supplier of the system or by a single application operated by the motor operator. It involves a database wherein all vehicle location data is stored. Telematics also incorporates digital maps in its day-to-day work, allowing visual demonstration of vehicle tracking and location. For this purpose, satellites, cellular connections, and trunked radio transmissions come in handy.

Most telematics technologies help collect, process, and transmit data on vehicle use, maintenance requirements, and automotive servicing. Fleet management software is a common branch of telematics. It assists in coordinating with the other vehicles to gain a detailed view of the fleet’s working, productivity, and condition of the overall fleet. 

How Does a Telematics System Work?

At the fundamental level, a telematics system uses a tracking device that uses GPS technology to send, receive and transmit vehicular data. It connects through the vehicle’s OBD ports, enabling the system to operate through a wireless interface. This GPS-enabled tracking device collects all data and transmits it to a centralized server through a stable internet or satellite connection. The centralized server interprets the data and allows the operators to access it through a user-friendly website. Through Open Platform Telematics, companies integrate with the public, user-friendly platforms available out there. The data is made accessible on computers, smartphones as well as tablets. This data also offers an in-depth analysis of the entire fleet.

Fleet managers aim for good quality, safety, and overall management of fleets at the lowest cost possible, leading to awareness, motivation, and extensive knowledge of the industry and the fleet management system in the organizations. 

Features of Telematics Systems

  • Wireless Communication: Wireless communication has become the predominant method of communication in GPS fleets. Several leading technologies such as GPS satellites, GPRS networks, and cloud computing are now employed to track vehicles. Information is seamlessly transmitted to web servers through wireless GPS technology and can be used to communicate with fleet vehicles or dispatch drivers at the snap of your fingers. Satellite communication, though much more expensive, offers flawless connectivity without coverage gaps to the fleets. 
  • Engine and Data Mapping: Through mapping service providers like google and apple, data transmitted via GPS fleets are enabled and optimized for web browsers and mobile applications. It also includes geofencing, a newfound and crucial aspect of GPS fleet management. 
  • Cloud Services: Cloud services have now become a necessity in GPS fleets. The GPS device captures the data and transmits it to cloud services via the internet or satellite connections. 
  • User-Friendly Optimization: Rapid development in technology has also helped curate user-friendly and easy-to-read web browsers and mobile apps. Data from the in-vehicle devices can be easily accessed and used by fleet managers through these platforms. 
  • Vehicle Engine Computer Module: The GPS device connects and transmits data directly from the vehicle engine, gaining access to information, such as fuel consumption, travel time, harsh braking, seatbelts, and faulty engine. 
  • Insurance Risk Assessment: Insurance companies often use telematics data to access driver behavior. It allows them to gauge the risk factors and formulate insurance plans and premiums accordingly. 
  • Safety Assurance: Telematics helps keep an eye on the location and speed of the vehicle and to watch out for any ill activity such as harsh driving if it takes place. Essentially, it provides every piece of information fleet managers need to keep tabs and have complete control over their vehicles. It aids in making improvements and formulating emergency plans in case of an accident. 

Telematics technology also allows fleet managers to create geofences depending upon their needs as and when required. Fleet telematics makes fleet management practical and gives complete autonomy of the vehicles to the manager too. 

Why Do You Need Telematics?

Using telematics technology has become a prerequisite for many industries these days. Integrating fleet telematics in day-to-day technology has increased productivity and efficiency, raised revenue, improved the quality of customer service, and made fleet management organizations much more reliable than before. Automobile insurance companies, fleet management companies, construction, and transport companies are a few examples of the industries that heavily employ fleet telematics in their day-to-day operations. 

Benefits of Telematics

  • Improved Driver Safety: With the help of telematics, fleet managers can get continuous updates on driver activity and vehicle diagnostics. It keeps the driver’s behavior in check. Through the insightful data, fleet managers can take care of any problems or defects in the fleets as soon as they are detected. They can improve the overall fleet operation based on reports that highlight driver performance and safety measures. 
  • Improved Work Productivity: Fleet telematics has improved the quality of service and made it suitable for the ever-changing needs and demands of the industry. All the transmitted data is translated and adapted into different, modern, and easy-to-use applications thereby, increasing productivity. Using telematics also reduces dependence on paperwork, making the workload much easier for everyone involved. 
  • Lower Fuel Costs: Telematics identifies operations that cost waste of energy and fuel, such as idling and longer routes, and helps in eliminating them. It allows fleet managers to identify such practices and deal with them to increase overall productivity. For example, minimizing vehicle downtime by creating time-effective routes for drivers can also lead to optimum fuel consumption. It can also help come up with driver-specific route plans to reduce unnecessary mileage. 
  • Notifications: Fleet managers receive immediate notifications facilitated by telematics. It allows them to take immediate and appropriate actions in emergencies or avoid malpractices at the hands of the drivers. They will also know where the vehicle is at all times, reducing unauthorized usage of the fleet resources during and beyond work hours. 
  • Easier Payroll: As telematics can automatically record the accurate work hours of every driver, fleet managers can make payments based on this data. It saves them from manually calculating the amount and also avoids any discrepancies. 

Fleet telematics stands to provide exponential growth in the industry as newer services come up and aid operations with the help of existing GPS technology. More and more fleets are recognizing the efficiency of using fleet telematics and incorporating it in day-to-day businesses.  

Telematics has become essential in the GPS dominating world. Without telematics, the most basic operations which are a part of your day-to-day work can seem impossible. By incorporating the most basic needs of a fleet with the most complex one within one system itself, telematics has become an indispensable part of fleet management all around the globe. Before opting for a telematics provider, consider the features vital to your product and your pockets, such as the pricing, the hardware, the services provided, and the services you require carefully. Choosing the correct telematics service provider for your fleet is vital because you need all the information cohesively delivered to you at the touch of your fingertips.

Matrack Telematics Solution

Matrack Inc. offers qualitative and economical GPS and tracking telematics solutions for your fleet. We also provide technical and customer support, which is available for your service 24×7. At Matrack, we offer plans and premiums personalized for your needs and fleet requirements. Our telematics system can easily acquaint itself with the driver’s habits and detect inactivity or usage of vehicles outside work hours.

Our services include top-tier features such as geofencing, user-friendly interfaces for communication, and real-time tracking and reports. You can access the platform via a laptop, desktop, mobile, and almost any device with an internet connection. Our software platform has all features essential to telematics and fleet management and also comes with additional services and features for an economical price. With us, you can reduce costs and mitigate third-party channels of communication, thereby improving the overall productivity of the fleet and organization.

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