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Geotab expands online telematics marketplace

Earlier this year, Geotab announced the launch of its marketplace tool and has recently added more layers of options for users to customize their telematics experience. The program is not aimed at the end-user customers of telematics, but Geotab’s customers – fleet management companies and service providers.

The goal of the marketplace is to enable customers of Geotab to better utilize and extend the life of their telematics investment. When a telematics solution is deployed, the average customer utilizes it for about seven years. That’s a pretty long time and requirements can change. The marketplace enables the addition of new functionality without the need for new telematics equipment – unless these are add-on hardware options. The marketplace looks quite like an app store, right down to the way a specific function looks when you click on it. When customers want to add something they are routed to the provider of that service for more information, rather than the purchase being enabled through Geotab. In some cases the offer is free, but that is between the user and the provider. Geotab is offering the marketplace tool as a way to be more of a “one-stop-shop” for telematics and enhance customer retention vs. getting a percentage of the sales. geotab example

There are five categories in the marketplace:

  • Add-Ins
  • Add-Ons
  • Mobile Apps
  • General Software Solutions
  • Custom Reports.

Add-ins are provided by third-party companies that have developed the integration of their product with Geotab’s hardware through the Geotab SDK. At the simplest level, these solutions are certified to work. The products in this category are software-based and intended to add more telematics functionality to the customers’ program. Some examples include vehicle maintenance tracking, engine performance monitoring and mapping tools.

The second category of add-ons, which is all about hardware, was the key area for the initial marketplace launch. Some examples of what is offered include asset tracking and Garmin routing products.

The third category for mobile apps is really about the ability to bring your own device and pair it to the existing telematics solution via cellular pairing.

General software solutions isn’t what I initially thought it would be based on the title. I think add-ins is what most users will think of when they hear that, as it allows additional software functionality. It addresses the ability to take data gathered by the telematics solution and connect that data feed to users’ existing back-office and analytic systems. According to Geotab, its solution collects over 600 million telematics data points per day.

Last are the custom reports. Included in the basic package, the Geotab solution comes with 25 report options prebuilt in Excel. The company found that 40% of customers are using only these reports and feel it is due to perhaps them not knowing what else they could do, or being uncomfortable with manipulating the reports on their own. Based on the most commonly requested custom reports, a selection of these additional reports are included in the package.

Geotab is available in 70 countries today, as are these tools, which are presently the same across regions and only in English, but they are in the process of adding some key local language-translated versions and potentially some solutions for specific markets in the future.

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Claudia Bacco, Managing Director – EMEA for RCR Wireless News, has spent her entire career in telecom, IT and security. Having experience as an operator, software and hardware vendor and as a well-known industry analyst, she has many opinions on the market. She’ll be sharing those opinions along with ongoing trend analysis for RCR Wireless News.

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