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Fleet-Management Company Uses IoT Network Across Borders

DRVR's solution for tracking vehicles throughout Southeast Asia leverages Tata Communications' MOVE-IOT Connect SIM technology to provide seamless data access, no matter which cellular network is being used.
By Claire Swedberg

That's where the MOVE-IOT Connect SIM technology steps in for DRVR, Bartolo says. The sensors transmit data is collected in real time, using the best available local cellular network. The DRVR application then processes and analyzes this data, turning it into actionable intelligence, such as providing fleet-performance metrics on a user's telematics device—a phone or laptop computer, for instance.

DRVR offers its fleet-management solutions to customers throughout Thailand, Hong Kong, Indonesia, the Philippines and Myanmar, while there are pilots currently under way in Sri Lanka and Australia as well. Several thousand vehicles are included in its network so far, while the company expects that number to grow to tens of thousands during the coming few years.

Tata Communications' Anthony Bartolo
Several vehicle manufacturers, such as New Holland Tractors and Mercedes in Myanmar, are installing the DRVR devices on some of their new vehicles, as an added feature for customers wishing to track their fleet. Logistics firms using the technology, Henderson says, include such carriers as DHL in Myanmar.

When a vehicle utilizes the solution, sensors transmit data using the MOVE-IOT Connect SIM technology, which connects services using the best available local cellular network. DRVR then collects and analyzes data. "We run a number of algorithms," Henderson explains, "and turn it into actionable data," which can be forwarded to management. For example, the information could indicate how fast a particular vehicle is moving, when it may have left its expected transit route, or when it may be delayed. The system can also detect a problem, such as a failure of the technology—for instance, if someone placed a piece of foil over the device to prevent transmission.

Tata Communications employs networks specific to the application, Bartolo says, and is access-agnostic. The company maintains relationships with approximately 900 mobile operators, he adds, to ensure that coverage is available wherever a user's transit route might be. By using Tata's global network and partnerships with mobile communications service providers, Henderson explains, DRVR not only is spared negotiating individual contracts with local carriers, but can also more easily deploy a multi-national solution for a customer.

As commercial transportation continues to grow across Asia, Henderson says, the DRVR partnership with Tata Communications will make that growth easier. Without it, he adds, "[lack of] connectivity is a major limit to growth." Because of the Tata global network, he adds, deployments are faster and easier—a small pilot in Sri Lanka that might have required months of preparation without the network, for example, can now be set up within a matter of days by simply providing sensor devices and SIM cards, as well as configuring the data required from each device.

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