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Trends in Telematics for 2016

In the June 27, 2016 issue of Connected Car Tech web site it was announced that Verizon has purchased fleet management company Telogis in order to enhance its presence in the Telematic industry. This comes one month after it was announced by AT+T that they would be expanding their Telematic offering to meet surging demand. To support this claim the article cites a study conducted by AT+T and electronics manufacturer Ericson which, among other things, said, “…75 % of consumers view connected car services as a key feature in their next car purchase.” The article goes on to state that as of the second quarter of 2016, AT+T has over 8 million cars on its network while providing connectivity to over 50% of all new connected passenger vehicles in the U.S.

Writing for the Connected Car Tech web site in their July 6, 2016 Robert Schuessler states, in an article titled, How a Dealership’s Customer Loyalty can be Improved using Connected Car Technology, that an area of possible growth for the Telematics industry may be to partner with car dealers and develop customer loyalty programs based on Telematic information. In addition, the article goes on to state that, “by 2017 two-thirds of all vehicles will be connected to the internet.”Mr. Schuessler writes, “The mix of connected car technology and dealership apps opens new possibilities for working with the dealerships CRM system. For instance, the dealership can update the mileage of all connected vehicles on a daily basis and forecast the probability of service visits in the following two weeks. A part from this, the dealership can obtain diagnostic reports from client’s vehicles with information about DTS errors and their status. When a critical error is detected, the connected car solution combined with the mobile app connects the client to a technician support operator at the service station.”

In an article written for the British organization, Royal Auto Motive Club’s on their web site, there was a note of caution for those working and developing the Telematic industry. That warning came in the form of staff concerns about 24/7 car tracking. The article says that 1 in 5 fleet, shipping, and logistic companies do not plan to purchase Telematic services due to these concerns. One of the major issues involves the intrusiveness of the product and the inability to turn off monitoring.

Moreover, according to an article written for the web site, Telematic News on January 28, 2015 in an article titled US; FTC warns about Security Risks for Connected Cars, it was recommended that companies competing in the Telematic industry specifically as well as companies who make products for use in the “Internet of things” in general. The recommendations include:

  • Build Security into the device from the beginning not as an afterthought.

  • Train employees about the importance of security and manage security issues at the appropriate level of management.

  • If you use an outside provider make sure they are able to maintain reasonable security and oversight.

  • When security risk is identified, consider a “defense-in-depth” strategy whereby multiple layers of security may be used to defend against a particular risk.

  • Consider measures to keep unauthorized users from accessing a consumer’s device, data, and personal information stored on the network.

  • Monitor connected devices throughout their expected life cycle, and where feasible, provide security patches to cover known risks.

Further, it was suggested that providers consider limiting the amount of data they collect and store on consumers. While also maintaining said information for shorter periods of time to lessen the possibility of attracting hackers who may want access to this information for nefarious purposes.

As with many budding industries, the Telematics industry is in the mist of substantial growth. Along with that growth companies have begun to pursue strategies that focus oncollaboration, consolidation, and the sharing of information. Telematic fits squarely within the general trend in industry to begin developing “The internet of Things.” Toward that end, automotive giants such as Toyota and Ford have begun to utilize the products created by companies such as Livio which provides a technology called Smart Device Link (SDL) for the automotive industry. According to an article written for the website Connected Car Tech for their January 2016 addition, “SDL facilitates use of Apps that fit each company’s in-car system characteristics and interface, making it easy for end users. However, end users can also benefit from Apps being made available across multiple auto makers Telematic systems and in a shorter development cycles. This would require industry wide collaboration.”

The Top Five Telematic Solutions for cars include the following:

Spy Tech Mini is considered the best in class with regard to accuracy and has the following features:

  • Improved accuracy over previous versions

  • Real time tracking every minute (5 second with an upgrade)

  • One Year of full vehicle history

  • Geo-fencing

  • Speed and Inactivity alerts

  • Vehicle location on Google maps

  • Two weeks or longer battery life

  • No long term contract (can be terminated at any time)

  • Compact size

Spot Trace GPS Tracking Device for Cars features include:

  • Real Time Tracking in 2.5, 20, 30, 60 second intervals

  • View location on Google maps

  • Geo-Fencing

  • Battery life from 2 weeks to 1 month depending on interval

  • Low battery alert

  • Rechargeable Battery

  • Receive Daily Alerts

  • Movement alert

  • Power off notification

  • Line Power with 5v USB connection (Not water proof)

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