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What is Connected Vehicle Technology and How Does it Work?

With the world becoming “connected” in every sense and digitization taking over all aspects of our lives, connected vehicle technology is all set to take the automobile industry by storm. Effective implementation would totally revolutionize the way we drive!

What is connected vehicle technology?

A connected vehicle utilizes wireless networks to connect to devices in its vicinity. Connected vehicle technology is what creates connected vehicles that can predict each other’s movements and therefore avoid accidents by warning drivers about dangerous driving, slowing down, and overtaking. It has a wide range of applications such as syncing entertainment systems with smartphones or vehicles connected via the Internet that can communicate with other vehicles, mobile devices, and city intersections, as well.

How does connected vehicle technology work?

As of now, vehicles have to be linked up to the Internet, in order to be successfully connected. But in the future, cars could be connected by short-range radios for extra communication. This technology relies upon instant communication between vehicles in order to work effectively, but it needs to work universally too, regardless of vehicle brand, model, or location.

There are two kinds of systems being used in vehicles these days – embedded, which means the car is equipped with a chipset and built-in antenna, and tethered, where vehicles are integrated with hardware that connects to the driver’s smartphone. Connected vehicle technology can be used to gain access to and send data, connect with other devices and vehicles via IoT, download software updates or patches, and provide Wi-Fi connectivity to passengers too. Even telematics data can be accessed conveniently.

Using connected fleet technology in fleet management

Needless to say, connected vehicles will improve fleet management services by a great deal. Once vehicles are connected to the Internet, all information can be accessed swiftly by fleet managers. As mentioned, this technology can be used to access telematics data, so drivers get notified of vehicle health, along with potential problems. If a component needs to be replaced or a part isn’t working the way it should, proper maintenance procedures are a must, before they become the cause of accidents.

It is highly likely that connected vehicle technology will be seamlessly integrated into completely autonomous vehicle technology in the future. At first, drivers could still be required to fill a precautionary role in autonomous vehicles. This way, the transition from human-driven vehicles towards fully autonomous, driverless, technology, is smoother. When fewer drivers hit roads to carry cargo and more traffic is being supervised by autonomous programs, fleet management will become an even more important task within transport-oriented companies. The technology can effectively survey the status and health of its company vehicles via IoT. Even though route optimization does a great job, connected vehicle technology can be used to fine-tune the process, in order to find the perfect route to avoid traffic.

Connected vehicle technology could help improve road safety

Connected vehicles can drastically lower the number of fatalities and serious injuries due to accidents on roads and highways. While the number of people surviving crashes has increased significantly thanks to airbags, anti-lock brakes, and other technology, it is imperative to implement solutions that prevent such crashes in the first place.

Connected vehicle technology allows cars, trucks, buses, and other vehicles to “talk” to each other with in-vehicle or aftermarket devices that continuously share important safety and mobility information. This technology has more benefits than newer ones appearing in high-end vehicles such as radar, lidar, cameras, and other sensors. Connected vehicle technology has a greater range than onboard vehicle equipment that allows receiving alerts regarding dangerous situations. It gives more time to react and prevent accidents. This technology doesn’t rely on “line of sight” communications to be effective, unlike radar. So if a car ahead is braking hard on the other side of the hill due to an obstruction, you would still get notifications, even if you can’t see or aren’t aware of the hazardous situation.

Apart from guaranteeing safety, connected vehicles also increase transportation options and reduce travel times. If traffic managers are able to control the flow of traffic better with the advanced communications data available and prevent or lessen developing congestion, it could significantly reduce fuel consumption and emissions. It has excellent potential to succeed and can be applied to conventional vehicles and self-driving cars.

Practical Tips for Successful Last-Mile Delivery

Last-mile delivery might sound simple, but it is actually the most difficult step of the whole shipping process. The rapid growth of the eCommerce industry (accelerated due to the pandemic), has increased demand for flexible, fast, traceable, and personalized last-mile delivery. That is why it is imperative to devise a seamless operation so last-mile deliveries are executed successfully.

Here are a few tips to keep in mind:

Find the right delivery partner

Most retailers don’t specialize in the actual delivery of the products they offer – it is passed on via a partnership with a shipping provider or even a postal service. Take your time to research any company you consider partnering with. Find out if they specialize in a particular sector, the markets they cater to, specific last mile solutions provided, and of course, the technological solutions they bring to the table. For instance, does the delivery service offer easy technology integration? If not, you might want to look elsewhere. The delivery partner should meet your business’ needs and customer expectations.

Invest in visibility

Make sure you use a last-mile software that comes with effective tracking capabilities – it lets you spot problems right away and resolve them proactively. Gaining visibility on shipments, drivers, and delivery vehicles via GPS tracking allows fleet managers to act quickly and decisively when unexpected scenarios crop up. Last-mile tracking also proves a key selling point for customers who appreciate knowing about the ETA of their shipment, along with driver location. Being aware of the ETA ensures they are present to receive it, which means the possibilities of failed deliveries is reduced. Moreover, the customer service team doesn’t have to field calls from angry customers demanding to know why their shipment is getting delayed!

Optimize routes

No one relies on manual route planning anymore! Using route optimization software helps to map out the fastest and most cost-effective routes between two points within minutes while accounting for real-time variables too. Having drivers spend less time in traffic or preventing them from traversing unnecessarily long routes means real cost savings in the form of reduced fuel expenses and vehicle maintenance costs. Moreover, shorter and more accurate routes mean company resources aren’t wasted. Route optimization also allows businesses to handle on-demand deliveries or accommodate last-minute changes and adjustments.

Offer personalization of delivery

Most people are familiar with how Amazon has revolutionized last-mile deliveries with the same-day delivery offer for its Prime customers. But it is worth bearing in mind that a majority of customers think they will get same-day delivery, whenever they see “fast delivery” mentioned. However, delivery personalization takes it to a whole other level. While speedy delivery is vital, so is convenience. Retailers that want to provide outstanding last-mile delivery should factor in same-day delivery, chosen time delivery, or perhaps local pickup delivery, where the customer picks up their shipment from a parcel locker in their vicinity. The greater the personalization of last-mile delivery choices, the more likely are customers to be happy.

Reduce last mile distance

As we all know, the last mile is the journey from a fulfillment center or warehouse to the end-user – its actual distance is typically much longer than a simple journey from point A to B. Reducing distances in the actual last mile distance could result in greater efficiencies and lower costs significantly. One way to achieve this is to use retail outlets as distribution centers, especially in areas with big customer bases. Those who conduct business online and at brick-and-mortar stores will find it convenient to do so. Even purely eCommerce retailers have the option of renting out spaces and using them to minimize last mile distances in areas where their products are particularly popular.

Last-mile delivery is one of the most important stages in the delivery process, but complex logistics and inefficient operations can cut into profits, hamper credibility, and lead to customer dissatisfaction. These practical tips will help to streamline the last mile process, so you can execute successful deliveries without hassle.

How Real-Time Tracking and Tracing Can Improve Last-Mile Delivery Management?

Last-mile delivery is the last leg of the supply management chain that transports the package from the warehouse or sorting facility to the destination. Due to the pandemic, an increased number of people have begun to shop online even more than usual, which has put enormous strain on the last mile delivery system. To keep up with the competition, and maintain the speed and efficacy of deliveries, most companies have adopted certain methods like tracking and tracing.

Why is last-mile tracking and tracing important?

Customer expectations are rising, and so are their demands. Most of them want same-day deliveries or deliveries within an hour and two. Telling a customer “no” is the last option for businesses, which means they need to improve last-mile management, so deliveries are completed accurately and on time. This is where real-time tracking and tracing play an integral role. Using various tools and techniques, businesses can get access to real-time insights regarding the location of vehicles and the status of delivery. It provides precise information about delayed and on-time deliveries, so delivery stakeholders can boost KPI benchmarking and improve productivity. 

What are the benefits of last-mile tracking and tracing?

An advanced last mile software includes features like real-time tracking and tracing, which improves the whole process. Take a look:

Make the process more secure

Losing a shipment or misplacing it happens quite often, but customers will always blame the carrier. That is why implementing real-time tracking is a must – it ensures the safety of the package and lets the company trace it, in case it gets lost. Telling a customer that their package is “lost in transit” is simply not good enough. But if companies are able to track a misplaced shipment, then customers will understand the reason for the delay.

Companies should also offer a warranty for safe delivery. Having a local warehouse at every delivery point is essential to ensure the safety of the products while they are in storage. While logistics companies usually have their own warehouses in major cities, but not in local regions, it is advisable to rent a warehouse based on their necessity.

Track last mile carriers properly

Businesses have to achieve a perfect order index, which means improving the tracking of last-mile carriers is vital. Last-mile delivery software can help to boost carrier management by enabling end-to-end tracking of shipments. It provides critical data regarding core carrier KPIs such as time taken to complete a task, the number of successful deliveries, failed and delayed deliveries, route taken and diversions from the planned route (if any), driver productivity, material handling, and much more.

Effective route optimization

Using the route optimization feature, the last mile software maps out the most cost-efficient route(s) between two destinations. When drivers follow this route, it reduces delivery time and cost, as tasks are completed on time and failed deliveries are minimized. Deliveries are automatically assigned to specific drivers on certain routes to ensure faster processing.

Using the route optimization feature, the last mile software maps out the most cost-efficient route(s) between two destinations. When drivers follow this route, it reduces delivery time and cost, as tasks are completed on time and failed deliveries are minimized. Deliveries are automatically assigned to specific drivers on certain routes to ensure faster processing.

Allow auto-dispatch

Manually assigning deliveries is a near-impossible task if you are working on multiple deliveries along complex routes. Last-mile software helps to assign deliveries automatically, as mentioned above, and matches them to the right driver, depending upon the route. The efficiency of the algorithm has proved to be perfect, and they require minimal to no manual intervention. To maintain speed delivery, everything is regulated by these algorithms right from the dispatch process till the package reaches its destination. Customers get a message about the Estimated Time of Arrival (ETA) of the shipment. They are also updated on any delays if any. It reduces failed deliveries, as the customer is present to receive the package

Get customer feedback

Customers can give their inputs regarding delivery and service – it is an important feature of real-time tracking. Thus companies can analyze their progress, find out where they went wrong, what they can do to improve, etc.

Real-time tracking and tracing of shipments can not only pinpoint the exact location of vehicles and shipments but improve the last mile delivery management as well. Customers will receive packages on time and give positive feedback, which not only means preventing revenue leakage but building upon credibility as well.


Power of Two – Cipia and Anstel collaboration

Two of the biggest challenges for fleet managers these days are guaranteeing driver safety and ensuring that fleet performance is top-notch. Anstel’s Connected Fleet provides an all round-solution that helps to manage assets, gain better control of fleet operations, improve efficiency, and keep tabs on real-time location of vehicles and drivers at all times. Access to such useful data has helped managers make strategic decisions that have proved instrumental for businesses. Combined with Cipia Driver Monitoring System, which allows extensive in-cabin monitoring, it is possible to optimize both vehicle and workforce performance.

Collaboration of Cipia and Anstel

Small distractions on the road could have a drastic impact, as it can lead to major incidents, driver injuries, repair costs, damage to credibility, and revenue leakage. Apart from being able to manage fleet operations, it is crucial to enforce safe driving practices. Anstel’s Connected Fleet and Cipia DMS create a robust driver and fleet monitoring system that automatically records daily driving behavioral data, which helps managers with a clearer fleet performance overview.

Using alerts, reports, and driver scorecard analytics, it is possible to be informed of every single instance of unsafe driving, negligence, and other problematic behavioral patterns in the fleet. It includes features such as monitoring sudden acceleration, sharp braking, idling, fuel theft, unauthorized usage, driver fatigue, non-optimized routes, and so on.

How a driver and fleet monitoring system can be of help

With the in-depth data collected from the driver monitoring system, fleet managers can identify areas for improvement and take appropriate action. It helps to assess driving patterns and make informed decisions. Apart from rectifying driving behavior issues, managers can protect employees, while ensuring safety of other drivers and pedestrians on the road. Training modules can be developed for grooming employees into conscious and responsible drivers.

Paving the way ahead

Thanks to vehicle telematics and IoT technology, fleet managers have the chance to visualize, analyze, and implement big data to streamline fleet operations. DMS and Connected Fleet together form a potent fleet management system - a centralized hub for monitoring, evaluating, and producing reports. It helps to identify potential fleet anomalies before they become major issues, and correct troubling driving behavior that can cost the company a great deal!

Investing in a driver and fleet monitoring system enhances efficiency, promotes growth, brings down expenditures, protects drivers, and also optimizes overall operations.

About Anstel:

A market-focused company that prides itself in creating ground-breaking IoT (Internet of Things) based solutions. We partner with Telcos and other businesses to develop convenient and cost-effective IoT-based solutions by integrating  sensors and smart devices.

About Cipia:

Cipia, formerly Eyesight Technologies, is a pioneer in intelligent sensing solutions that use edge-based computer vision and AI for safer and smarter mobility experiences. The company focuses on the automotive in-cabin environment, offering the Cipia driver monitoring system for fleets among other in-cabin solutions for the automotive industry. Cipia’s computer vision AI solutions help to understand vehicles better, meet business requirements, and offer an improved mobility experience without compromising on safety.

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