Vodafone Qatar has enhanced its Fleet Management IoT service, which provides live information such as traffic data, vehicle location, fuel consumption, vehicle status and employee working time. The service is managed end-to-end by Vodafone Qatar, with two variations available.
The Advanced version provides features that can be tailored to the individual requirements of company administrators and drivers. The Plug & Go version is for businesses that do not require complex features, and enables quick implementation by administrators in order to streamline their customer services and operations. Both versions provide tracking, alerts and reporting, and all data are accessible through a dedicated web portal or a mobile application to allow remote access.
The Advanced version lets users assign tasks, dispatch jobs and plan routes for drivers. Administrators and drivers have two separate interfaces with tailored sets of information that are synchronized instantly. Through using Fleet Management, more efficient job allocation leads to faster response, and shorter journeys bring about reductions in fuel costs. Drivers are able to complete more jobs, which generates more revenue, and faster lead times and route optimization ensure better customer service.
We like to see a mobile operator taking so much ownership over the details of IoT implementation for business customers. Vodafone Qatar is taking the approach of not only providing and IoT product but making sure it provides end-to-end service and then offering it with two tiers of service, one for companies that need complex tailored solutions and one for those that prioritize seamless, fast deployment.
Fleet management, which allows companies of varying sizes and degrees of complexity to monitor and control fleets of vehicles, is an important application of IoT technology. While it may not be the most cutting-edge, it is very widely useful and therefore in high demand among business subscribers. As such, it is an excellent revenue source for MNOs to develop as they seek value-added products to offer, especially as 5G is rolled out.
It is noteworthy that Vodafone Qatar has apparently created this service itself rather than in partnership with a technology firm. If it is possible for an operator to do this, it is of course ideal in that revenue is not shared, and the operator’s brand can claim all the glory, so to speak, for the achievement. In any case, Vodafone’s Fleet Management, in both versions, seems to be a product that provides extensive services, all of which are essential to productivity, on basis that recognizes the different needs of different types of clients. Deep-pocketed operators in developed markets may well want to emulate this example.