VDO apps: fleet management for every requirement
- VDO apps turn smartphones into assistants for long-distance truck drivers and fleet managers
- DTCO SmartLink connects tachograph and smartphone. Available for Android devices and starting in October for the Apple iPhone
- Future parking space app informs long-distance drivers about available truck parking space
Villingen-Schwenningen, September 27, 2013. Modern smartphones can do many things. They are telephone, camera and navigation device all in one. The apps from VDO, the manufacturer of the Digital Tachograph (DTCO), now turn the compact all-rounders into a remote control for truck drivers and a command center for fleet managers as well. Connected with the tachograph via the DTCO SmartLink, the versatile software solutions make daily driving appreciably more efficient and more comfortable. The DTCO SmartLink is available as of October also in the “Pro” version, which is suitable for the Apple iPhone.
The DTCO 2.0a permits truck drivers to optimally organize their driving and rest periods. Thanks to the VDO Counter, one look suffices to let drivers know how long they can continue to drive their vehicles – to the exact minute. But: “Often the digital tachograph is not installed directly within the driver’s field of vision,” explains Dr. Michael Ruf, head of the Commercial Vehicles & Aftermarket Business Unit at Continental. In the VDO Driver app the company has found the best possible solution to this problem – and increased the benefits of the DTCO many times over. In addition to the DTCO display with all menus and buttons, on the mobile phone screen the VDO Counter data, driving and rest periods as well as the driver’s card data are shown in real time.
Moreover, VDO has developed a counterpart to the Driver app precisely tailored to the requirements of fleet management. The TIS-Web Fleet app is available to all VDO TIS-Web customers, and with an added messaging function makes the smartphone a user-friendly, cost-efficient interface between fleet manager and long-haul driver. Both parties can communicate with each other quickly and without complication by means of the app and at the same time access the fleet management data in VDO TIS-Web.
The continuous improvement of economy and efficiency is one of the major challenges in the industry. With two additional apps VDO assists the fleet manager in the accomplishment of this task: in conjunction with DLD Wide Range, via smartphone the users of the VDO DriveTime app can conveniently find out the current position of all vehicles, the distances covered and the driver availability. The TIS Track&Trace app works in combination with VDO TIS-Web and, aside from the latest information about vehicle positions, routes and driver availability, also furnishes an overview of past trips. This enables optimizing route planning any time – even while on the go. And where maintenance, too, is concerned, VDO banks on lean, uncomplicated solutions. The VDO Workshop app is available to authorized DTCO service shops. Among other things, it permits speedy, simple readout of technical information about the DTCO.
And the range of VDO apps constantly is being extended. At present the VDO developers are working on a revolutionary solution to one of the biggest problems which long-distance drivers currently face – the time-intensive search for unoccupied parking spaces or resting places. Many rest areas are so overcrowded that truck drivers have no choice now but to make several attempts before they find one where they can park. A parking space app soon will change this. In a virtual community truck drivers can report free parking spaces.
The VDO parking space app meets the same criterion as all the VDO apps currently available: simple and intuitive operation. When required, the DTCO can be connected with the driver’s smartphone. A few simple operations suffice to make the DTCO SmartLink connect the digital tachograph with the user’s smartphone via Bluetooth. The user then only has to download the appropriate app and can get started. All current mobile phones equipped with an Android operating system are suited for the purpose; an app for the Apple iPhone will follow later. “With our applications we expand the possibilities of the DTCO and simultaneously create a multimedia network between drivers and fleet headquarters. VDO customers no longer hold just a smartphone in their hands – the future of Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS) has now arrived,” says Ruf.