The incorporation of data in fleet management has been an integral strategy for addressing challenges in the automotive industry for quite some time. But the data in question is not entirely intelligent, and it’s what distinguishes the current era as compared to conventional solutions – the level of intelligence inherent in the data being harnessed. Traditionally, fleet operators have relied heavily on data derived from hardware dongles, a practice that was entirely justified when the number of vehicles on the road was fewer, and data volumes remained manageable. Fast forward to today, with a colossal influx of vehicles and an unprecedented surge in data generation, the use of OBD devices no longer aligns with the current demands of fleet management.
Furthermore, modern vehicles by design are manufactured with the goal to collect data indigenously, rendering hardware devices obsolete. This evolution paves the way for a new and more efficient approach to data collection – the utilization of embedded connected vehicle data and telematics.
Diversification of Data Sets in a Device-Agnostic Environment
Traditionally, TSPs have operated with closed telematics systems, depending solely on their proprietary devices, and thus limiting the exchange of data. With embedded data, however, TSPs stand to offer their services across a range of third-party devices, as well as already connected vehicles, fostering a device-agnostic environment. It essentially allows a single telematics device to seamlessly integrate with various fleet management platforms or collate data from multiple devices to contribute to one, central telematics platform.
This development has made data transparent, facilitating accessibility, and nurturing innovation, by tapping into the diverse array of data sets generated by vehicles, for streamlined operations and maximized cost savings.
The Power of Embedded Telematics – Data Integration Made Easy
To illustrate the benefit of a system that’s not reliant on devices, let’s consider a logistics company managing a diverse fleet of delivery trucks from various manufacturers. The fleet manager currently relies on the services of a TSP to harness basic data parameters, such as live location, speed, acceleration and fuel consumption, to optimize the fleet’s operational performance. Among the fleet, half of the vehicles are equipped with dedicated hardware devices used by the TSP, while the remaining half are newer models, featuring connected vehicle technology that come with company-installed embedded telematics systems.
Traditionally, the fleet manager would have been tasked with either installing dongles in the new connected models, to ensure adequate data collection from both connected as well as non-connected vehicles, or invest in a new TSP altogether. However, with a TSP that already utilizes embedded vehicle data, the fleet manager could simply provide the vehicle VINs and seamlessly integrate data from both the vehicle segments.
An embedded vehicle data-based automotive data platform, such as CerebrumX, already has strategic partnerships between the TSPs and vehicle OEMs in place, so that data effortlessly flows into the TSP platform through a dedicated interface, eliminating the need for additional aftermarket hardware devices. This grants the fleet manager comprehensive access to data and performance insights from the entire range of fleets.
In a similar scenario, when the fleet manager decides to implement fuel efficiency monitoring system, or deploy services such as maintenance scheduling or driver safety training, they can do so without changing TSPs. With an embedded data provider, collaborating with leading fuel management solution providers becomes easy, enabling the fleet manager to access real-time fuel consumption data directly on the existing TSP dashboard, without the hassle of integrating separate software applications. Essentially, data from multiple sources and OEMs is harmonized into a standardized format, allowing for the easy integration of third-party data with connected vehicle data, and optimizing fleet operations for superior results.
What Makes Embedded Vehicle Data Superior?
Superior Quality: Since embedded data is directly collected from the vehicle itself, it is both comprehensive and of the highest quality. Also, by extracting data at the source, loss of data is managed, ensuring privacy and reliability.
Enhanced Security: Embedded data is more secure by nature as it does not rely on external hardware or devices. This significantly minimizes the risk of data breaches and unauthorized access.
Data Control: Manufacturers and service providers exert more control over embedded data, ensuring that it is used ethically and in compliance with globally accepted data privacy regulations, such as GDPR and CCPA.
User Trust: When users know that their data is primarily coming from within the vehicle, it builds a higher level of trust, which is vital for continued adoption and success of connected vehicles.
What does this mean for the stakeholders in the fleet ecosystem?
There has been a steady increase in the sales and demand for connected vehicles over the past few years, with customers from every segment wanting a piece of the telematics solution. This highlights the importance of data ownership, placing OEMs at the forefront of the embedded data and telematics ecosystem. As a result, a shift is expected to significantly increase the number of telematics-based vehicle by OEMs, in turn contributing to make data richer and data-based services more comprehensive.
Furthermore, as OEMs assume the role of data providers, TSPs will be required to make strategic partnerships with OEMs to get easy access to the data that matters, eliminating the dependency on external hardware and aftermarket devices. OEM-sourced data will boast superior quality, avoiding the need for additional investment on the TSP’s behalf.
Fleet operators stand to benefit immensely from the adoption of embedded telematics systems. Not only will the hassle of installing new devices will be eliminated, but operations will be streamlined, reducing vehicle downtime and ensuring improved safety. The issue of managing mixed fleets will also be resolved, as the TSP will already have forged partnerships with OEMs to harness data from newer models. This will provide fleet operators access to innovative fleet services from both TSPs and OEMs, leading to significant cost savings, improved fleet productivity, and unfiltered access to comprehensive data and insights, all available within a unified platform.
In conclusion, the transition from traditional open telematics platforms to embedded data marks a pivotal step forward in the evolution of fleet management. Embedded data solutions offer unrestricted access to critical fleet information, that leads to a multitude of benefits, including heightened internal efficiencies, increased fleet productivity, reduced total cost of ownership (TCO), and a significant boost in situational awareness. As we embark on this transformative journey, it becomes abundantly clear that embedded data is not merely a technological upgrade; it is the future of fleet management. It promises a brighter, more efficient tomorrow for all stakeholders involved, while ensuring that the road ahead is marked by unprecedented innovation and success in the world of fleet operations.