One of the drawbacks with some telematics devices, is that they are tethered to your mobile phone. While coverage around the world is a lot better than it used to be, there are still a lot of places where you simply can’t get a signal, especially when you’re far from urban centres, which is where you tend to find a lot of farming and construction equipment. Unfortunately that means that a lot of the companies operating those machines can’t benefit from telematics, despite the fact that they are some of the firms and individuals that could benefit the most.
Case and New Holland Industrial (CNH) has recently signed a deal with Iridium Communications to provide satellite communications with its vehicles to offer telematics services wherever they are in the world. The default telematics found in CNH vehicles, Case SiteWatch and CNH Fleet Force, will now be able to operate outside of the usual range of mobile networks. This should lead to not only new customers for the telematics services that CNH offers, but also a much better product for those that are on the fringe of mobile network coverage, as now they’ll be able to drive around secure in the knowledge that their telematics will continue tracking them wherever they go.
That will certainly be a boon for those that have the devices for security purposes, as it would be quite nerve racking to know that all someone has to do with your expensive farm vehicle is drive it in a certain direction and it will no longer be tracked. Similar so, those working on farms in far flung places will now be able to utilise telematics tracking to adjust the efficiency of their work, no matter how far from mobile network coverage the fields are.
However, none of this will come for free unfortunately, as CNH is offering the satellite enabled upgrade as a separate package from the standard telematics offerings. It is not just restricting the offer to its own customers though and is instead offering it to all telematics users, regardless of the make or brand of vehicle they strap it on to. It is also being fair and assuming that not everyone has the will of financial coverage to be able to pay for every vehicle in their fleet to utilise the satellite tracking technology. To make up for that, CNH’s hardware is light and portable and is designed to work in any vehicle, so users will be able to transfer it between assets if needed.
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