Telematics is set to help construction equipment industry, says ABI Research.
There are several examples. Recently, Caterpillar and Trimble developed a brand agnostic fleet management and site productivity solutions platform designed for contractors with mixed equipment fleets. The two companies have for many years been operating a telematics network for construction fleets via a joint-venture company.
OEMs such as Caterpillar, Komatsu, Volvo, and John Deere are working with aftermarket suppliers such as Navman Wireless and industry bodies to develop standard APIs for some of the basic data such as vehicle identification, location, and hours of use.
Some operators such as rental fleet companies are calling for standardization of more advanced data feeds such as geo-fencing, immobilization, safety devices and alerts, and no doubt this will follow.
Most operators cite the tracking capability of their telematics systems as providing the most immediate initial benefit to their businesses, as it helps to reduce vehicle theft and misuse, thus reducing insurance premiums.
Telematics can also promote better machine utilization, reduction in fuel consumption, and enable more efficient maintenance and repair schedules. Additionally, it can help fleet operators with safety compliance by enabling them to control site access and observe noise limit requirements through the use of the “geo-fence” and “time-fence” features of their telematics systems.
Most construction fleets are mixed fleets comprising vehicles from different OEMs and often include on-road vehicles in addition to off-road vehicles.
Though many OEMs have implemented telematics solutions in their machines and vehicles, all these systems are different and mostly incompatible with each other. As a result, standardization continues to be a key problem holding back the adoption of telematics in the construction equipment sector.