In terms of discovering new products and seizing opportunities for growth, the technology industry is the richest. There will be some who argue the point. However, something tech companies can always rely on is the everchanging and developing landscape of the industry. There will always be room for improvement, and new offerings to the market. Therefore, we will always have a new and improved product or service to share with our customers.
Furthermore, when it comes to telematics, the capabilities of today’s technology will be old news in ten years’ time. The rapidly advancing nature of the technology sector is incredibly exciting, and encourages us to wonder; What will the next generation of telematics look like? And what will be driving the change?
Which consumer demands are driving development?
There are industry and customer needs pushing telematics to adapt and become more technologically advanced. First, and perhaps most influential, is the domination of the smartphone. Their wide-spread use has changed the way many industries connect with their target audience. As well as shaping how they will operate in the future. For telematics, there has been a push for greater integration capabilities with smartphones. Now it is possible for telematics to link to a device’s location tracking and geofencing. As well as being able to share data with service providers. In some cases, the smartphone has replaced the vehicle computer screen altogether.
As well as connectivity between our devices and vehicles, stronger connectivity between vehicles and the grid is a key element of next-generation telematics. For example, with increased processing power tracker data can be used to create usage-based, personalized insurance. Assessing driver risk has also become a takeaway from telematics, with insurers creating risk-profiles from the data. Furthermore, insurers now have the data to reward customers with good driving behaviour, and thus encourage and promote safer driving styles and behaviour. This overspill to other industries highlights how impactful and far-reaching insight from telematics can be, with an increasing number calling for and making use of the data. Suggesting next-generation telematics will become even more integrated and woven into elements of everyday life and services.
HGVs and the transport industry
Developments in telematics also stem from the haulage and transport industry. Smartphones aside, we cannot gloss over the simple need for cars and HGVs to be more environmentally friendly. With fuel prices on the rise too, there is a need for improved vehicle efficiency. We all want to make the most of our fuel. Particularly if you are a transport and haulage company who could spend tens of thousands of pounds every month on the stuff.
Efficiency reports from telematics solutions can be a real turning point for saving money. In addition to this, the insight into driving styles and halting bad habits can save tonnes of carbon going into the atmosphere. Also, compliance standards in relation to the environmental impacts of transport and low emission zones are presenting further challenges.
With potential fines and upgrades to vehicles always looming, such pressures on the industry are on-trend to increase. They are impacting the very design and functionalities of new telematic technologies. The stronger connectivity between the vehicle and what it goes through, the greater the saving potential. Insight into driver behaviour, route management, and fuel usage can guide real-life business decisions. Highlighting how technology and next-generation telematics are changing fleet management.
What next-generation telematics could look like
Telematics, vehicle health checks, GPS and asset tracking are hugely important. The data can highlight real areas for improvement to fleet operators, making a huge impact on how they direct their fleet henceforth. However, next-generation telematics can process and analyze a far greater volume of data, with finer detail. In recent years we have seen AI technology take its place in everyday applications. For example, Siri on our smartphones and Alexa in our homes. This technology and processing power could take fleet management to a place where risk can be foreseen, and thus prevented. We call this predictive telematics. Predictive telematics work by informing fleet operators of vehicle health. Alerting them should a vehicle require maintenance or have a potential problem. These predictions derive from monitoring:
- Vehicle speed
- Engine RPM
- Accelerator use
- What gear the vehicle is in
- Tyre pressure
- Engine temperature
- Oil and water levels
Such processing capabilities reduce risk to the driver, keep vehicles in top condition, and ensure fleets are compliant with safety legislation. Solution providers are realizing the need for this extra insight, as many fleet operators use their telematics systems as a live management tool. Having a level of foresight into vehicle maintenance and health could prevent and eradicate everyday headaches for fleet operators. As well as a range of financial costs to the business.
Telematics beyond the vehicle
Predictive telematics technology is moving in a similar direction for driver health and well-being. As an industry, there is an increasing focus on the issue. Hours can be unsociable, healthy food options limited, and exercise restricted. Making drivers prone to a whole host of stress and lifestyle-related illnesses. Furthermore, the effects of ignoring poor driver health and well-being are all too devastating. It highlights how fleet management is able to provide support and tackle the problem. Plus, drivers themselves are taking more of an interest in their personal health and working lifestyle.
Predictive telematics can highlight if someone could be at risk behind the wheel, and may give the industry a new way to manage poor driver health. For example, wearable technology like Garmin watches monitor and measure things like sleep quality, stress levels, and exercise. With this information, managers and drivers can see if a driver could be at risk by getting behind the wheel, and even prevent health-related accidents. Taking more action and promoting good driver health will additionally insight positive change within any company.
Technological changes are already empowering drivers to adapt their behaviours and improve safety standards. Further changes are likely, as more AI-enabled solutions are developed. Operators will need to keep their connected vehicle technologies under review and explore ways to unlock value within their team. With predictive telematics, or next-generation telematics shining a brighter light on what is happening within their fleet, and what may happen.
If you have questions or would like to find out more about predictive telematics and connected vehicle technologies, please get in touch today.