The biggest telematics company in the world, Geotab, is on a mission to become the dominant player in Australia.
As part of this ambitious undertaking, the company is determined to deliver a user-friendly and cost-effective solution for fleets to either adopt or maintain best practices, depending on their maturity, in compliance and safety.
An open platform is key to this. Accessing crucial vehicle data on one centralised platform mitigates against information slipping through the cracks as can be the case when users must shift between different platforms.
It also enables the user to scale up quickly or as they see fit. Geotab offers three plans — Base, Pro and Pro Plus.
These options will differ in appeal depending on the business and what it wants to achieve. The plans are priced accordingly and cater to standard telematics features like GPS tracking and fuel use through to enhanced safety tools, raw diagnostic information and right up to active tracking.
Transport businesses don’t stand still. Geotab understands this and will help a business to scale up in times of growth. Fleets can move up and down depending on their requirements at any time.
New contracts, special projects and seasonal work can make additional demands on a business as it expands even if that expansion is only temporary.
“We believe in the power of choice,” says David Brown, Geotab Asia Pacific Associate Vice President. “We’re very flexible in the way that we operate and having the potential to scale up is at the core of our business.”
In the digital age, fleets must have the ability to customise the solutions they have come to rely on. On an open platform there’s also less limitations for customisation.
New alliances with technology providers in both driver monitoring and fatigue management applications have bolstered its offering on Marketplace, Geotab’s application trading place.
This gives its customers a wealth of choice. Recent additions such as Logmaster and Sensata Technologies are just two of the 250 technology partners who are currently represented here.
For Geotab, the GO device is extracting information from the truck. Information as it is happening in real-time is processed through here including fault codes, notification alerts and operator behaviour right down to whether the driver is wearing a seatbelt.
“Not only will our technology pool together all the information from the vehicle but the customer can add on to that as well,” says David. “The advantage that we have is you can scale up.”
For GPS tracking, Geotab offers the G09 device that provides raw data on driver behaviour, such as harsh braking, acceleration, vehicle speeds and potential impacts.
If a fleet manager wants to delve even deeper on what’s happening inside the cab, a forward-facing camera can easily be added to GO. For long distance tasks the electronic logbook, as it is a current requirement, can be added.
So too tyre pressure monitoring.
“Given the amount of information being generated and coming through the vehicle no one else compares to that,” says David.
“No one gets as much information from the vehicle as we do because we have solutions engineers who help make sure that every vehicle that we connect to we get from it as much information as possible.”
With 55 billion data points processed daily that’s a deluge of information even for the most experienced people working in telematics.
The grey area in telematics has long been how to find the best way to interpret data to get the most out of it. But just how much time should be spent on data interpretation to make it meaningful in the decision-making process?
It’s a daunting question given many fleets are already analysing the granular details of performance reporting to address areas that need improvement.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) would appear one way forward. Geotab is embracing AI and views it as a resource with the potential to drill down even further on data. As it has 3.7 million connected vehicles globally there’s an opportunity to make use of it as a commodity.
Anonymous data, that is data that can’t be identified as to who generated it, is collected in a Google Big Query database.
The data can be separated via a tool called Geotab Data Connector which uses templates that can be applied to a host of categories from safety to maintenance to productivity. It’s ideal for businesses that want to uncover areas for operational and bottom-line improvements.
This is where Geotab can provide real advantages to customers according to David.
“The template benchmarks against peers in the business and like-minded fleets in the industry as well,” he says.
“For a last mile delivery business, it can look at data from a similar type of business to see where it compares and differs. It can give the fleet a very good snapshot of what’s going on at present.”
But where Geotab goes the extra mile with AI is in a new product called Project G. Currently in beta testing, Project G, similarly to ChatGPT, can generate answers to questions in a matter of seconds, slashing the time it takes to collate numbers from reports.
Want to know the least fuel-efficient vehicle in a fleet of hundreds? It will generate a report almost instantly. Geotab is currently actively using Project G. The hope is they will offer it to market as early as Q1 next year.
“It’s quite unique to the telematics industry in that it bridges the grey area of obtaining the data and then making decisions based on it,” David says. “That’s powerful for us and something which is a real game-changer that shows where telematics is really evolving.”