Proving the Business Case for the Internet of Things

BlackBerry launches asset tracking system for the trucking industry

William Payne
April 7, 2016
 
Ontario based mobile equipment provider BlackBerry has launched BlackBerry Radar, a secure end-to-end tracking system designed to help trucking companies and private fleet operators optimise asset utilisation, reduce theft, and cut operational costs.

According to BlackBerry, Radar can help companies optimise utilisation of trailers and shipping containers, improve on-time delivery, reduce theft, and generate more revenue from each trailer, without having to invest in costly IT infrastructure. 

BlackBerry says that Radar provides everything needed to track highly mobile assets, including a self-powered tracking device, an Internet of Things (IoT) platform with cloud-based applications, world-class security, and visual reports that make it easy to pinpoint the location and status of each asset.

According to BlackBerry, existing tracking solutions feature complex user interfaces and infrequent data updates which make it difficult to maximise asset utilisation and stop theft. BlackBerry says that Radar solves this problem by providing timely, actionable information in a solution that is easy to deploy, use, and maintain.

The BlackBerry Radar tracking device is designed to be easy to install and to generate rich, frequently updated information that enables operations managers, load planners, and dispatchers to make the most profitable decisions for their organisations. 

The device can send real-time alerts whenever a trailer has crossed a user-defined geofence or when a trailer door has opened or closed. It also monitors GPS location, temperature, humidity, and the presence of cargo. To access this data, customers log in to BlackBerry Radar’s secure online portal. From there, they can interact with visualisations and one-click reports that show where their assets are, and what is happening to them.

“BlackBerry Radar is fully integrated and provisioned, so customers can hit the ground running. Within minutes of installing our tracking device, users can access timely information on their assets to help make agile decisions that can dramatically improve an organisation’s profitability,” said Derek Kuhn, Senior Vice President, BlackBerry IoT. “And because BlackBerry Radar is cloud-based, it offers the ultimate in convenience. All you need is a smartphone, tablet, or computer equipped with a web browser, and you can access information for real-time decision-making — wherever you are, and whenever you need it.”

BlackBerry Radar encrypts all transmitted data; it also authenticates the device and cloud endpoints to ensure a high level of security and privacy between users and the service. Moreover, fine-grained permissions allow other participants in the supply chain to access relevant data and improve productivity. For instance, as a trailer approaches a warehouse, BlackBerry Radar can issue a notification, enabling warehouse staff to prepare for the incoming shipment and unload the trailer more quickly.

BlackBerry Radar also provides an extensible architecture and rich application programming interfaces (APIs) to help developers create innovative applications for the freight industry. These applications will help create a vibrant ecosystem to address a multitude of use cases and offer complementary solutions that benefit the industry.

“The expansion of IoT solutions is a key catalyst in the current transformation of the global freight shipping market, the importance of which has not been seen since the worldwide embrace of intermodal containers. The ever-improving capabilities and costs of connected sensor systems have made tracking the precise location of assets, real-time monitoring of their detailed physical condition, and associated data analytics the basis of a new gold standard for the industry. BlackBerry Radar’s cloud platform and innovative tracking device support these needs with a global end-to-end solution that leverages BlackBerry’s market-leading security, low-power solutions, and knowledge of cloud-based platforms,” said Andy Castonguay, Principal Analyst, Machina Research. “From a user standpoint, the end-to-end service design critically removes much of the complexity associated with the implementation and usage of IoT solutions that are common in today’s market.”

BlackBerry is a member of the National Private Truck Council, a U.S. trade association devoted to the interests of the private corporate trucking fleet industry and its professional practitioners.