Accelerating the Industrial Internet of Things
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Tata Communications Case Studies IoT-based Fleet Intelligence Innovation
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IoT-based Fleet Intelligence Innovation

Tata Communications
IoT-based Fleet Intelligence Innovation
IoT-based Fleet Intelligence Innovation
IoT-based Fleet Intelligence Innovation
IoT-based Fleet Intelligence Innovation
Equipment & Machinery
Logistics & Warehousing
Fleet Management (FM)

Speed to market is precious for DRVR, a rapidly growing start-up company. With a business model dependent on reliable mobile data, managers were spending their lives trying to negotiate data roaming deals with mobile network operators in different countries. And, even then, service quality was a constant concern.

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DRVR is an ASEAN-centric fleet management and intelligence service provider. It currently operates in Thailand, Myanmar, the Philippines, Hong Kong and Indonesia, addressing a Southeast Asian market estimated at US$1 billion. Its ambition is to enable the smartest and most cost-efficient vehicle fleets in the world. At present, the company is focused on using data analytics and gamification to improve the operations of its clients’ fleets.

With an advanced telematics service focused on fleet-based operations like supply chain logistics, cold-chain transportation, ready-mixed concrete and even bike tracking, DRVR uses big data harvested on the move to increase efficiency and improve productivity. Over 20 market-leading ASEAN companies, together operating thousands of vehicles, are already using DRVR technology. Some major suppliers are offering DRVR with new commercial vehicle sales. For example, Cycle & Carriage Myanmar supplies the service with Mercedes-Benz and FUSO products. “We’re in a dynamic and growing part of the world, and our business is expanding along with our customers,” explains David Henderson, the DRVR CEO. “We aim to solve regional fleet managers’ problems, as traditional solutions designed for markets in Europe and the Americas don’t work too well in Asia.”

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DRVR selected the Tata Communications MOVE™ network to help meet its key objective of offering customers outstanding service levels irrespective of where they are. Meanwhile, the big data software engine at the center of the DRVR solution runs in the Microsoft Azure cloud.

With Tata Communications there’s network choice, which means DRVR always gets seamless connectivity using the best available local mobile network. At the same time, the strong partnership between Tata Communications and Microsoft reinforces the DRVR born-in-the-cloud IoT-based business model.

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Fuel Consumption, Number Of Connected Devices, Tracking Of Assets, Vehicle Location Tracking, Vehicle Status
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IOT
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Emerging (technology has been on the market for > 2 years)
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As a start-up company, speed to market is precious for DRVR. “Capturing data on the move, which is critical to our business model, needs a reliable connectivity partner,” David continues. “We were literally spending our lives negotiating deals with mobile network operators in different countries. Even then there were concerns about quality.” To address those problems, DRVR chose the Tata Communications MOVE™ network to meet its objective of offering customers outstanding service levels no matter where they might be. “We selected Tata Communications as they made it easy to partner with them,” says David. “There were no up-front costs or complicated compliance processes.”

A strong relationship with Microsoft is another aspect of the DRVR solution. Microsoft Azure cloud teamed with Tata Communications MOVE™ brings proven ability to launch and deliver successful IoT solutions to market. “We were born in the cloud, which is why we exclusively use Microsoft Azure for our hosting. It guarantees ease-of-use and seamless integration with lower total cost of ownership,” says David. “Furthermore, almost all our customers use Microsoft products, and our service needs to be part of their software ecosystems. They don’t want to have to change their processes and business models to suit our needs.”

The DRVR fleet intelligence platform uses smart IoT sensors equipped with Tata Communications MOVE™ SIMs for cross-border mobile connectivity. Installed in vehicles and vessels, those sensors reliably transmit usage data over the air (OTA). That reliability comes because Tata Communications MOVE™ gives network choice, so DRVR always gets optimal network availability with seamless connectivity from the best local mobile network. That OTA usage data is routed to the Microsoft Azure cloud-hosted DRVR application engine. Centered on DRVR-developed proprietary software, it processes the usage data into actionable, real-time intelligence to notify companies of how their fleets are performing. Via APIs, gigabytes of data are passed back and forth in the cloud between the DRVR software and customer ERP and CRM platforms. Products like MapBox Visions and HD Insights, which contribute to the augmented reality effects intrinsic in the DRVR user interface, are supplied by Microsoft as managed services

“The joint Tata Communications and Microsoft Azure offering is a truly scalable IoT solution,” says Anthony Bartolo, Tata Communications Chief Product Officer. “A full edge-to-cloud platform, it takes care of transport, storage and compute resources. Security and reliability are built into the solution for private, end-to-end and always-on provisioning.”

DRVR is aiming for a seamless customer experience. David says: “The team at Tata Communications has been very supportive in helping us understand how we can better integrate Microsoft applications to be more efficient in our operations.” For example, one Microsoft-equipped customer uses a DRVR service to manage its mobile workforce. When a customer logs an issue, an order is created and automatically assigned to the closest service representative. When the job is finished, the DRVR platform automatically sends a request to generate an invoice. “Since we launched our IoT suite on Microsoft Azure, we’ve been working with partners like Tata Communications to develop solutions that will accelerate the adoption of IoT globally,” says Sam Denton-Giles, IoT and Advanced Analytics Lead APAC at Microsoft.

One of the most valuable things DRVR gets from the relationship is the convenience of a single point of contact for connectivity. “Tata Communications excels at offering connectivity anywhere in the world,” says David. “As a result, I’ve avoided countless weeks of painful negotiations with mobile network operators all around Asia.” From the customers’ point of view, Tata Communications and Microsoft are invisible, simply because the service works so reliably. That’s exactly how it should be. In places like Myanmar, staff safety is critical and the DRVR service provides that peace of mind. “Tata Communications and Microsoft align with our ethos of fair value, high quality, and security, and their teams work closely with us and with each other to understand our needs," says David.

A controlled study conducted for Cycle & Carriage Myanmar showed a 26 percent overall reduction in fuel consumption. It revealed that sharing best practice driver behaviors would alone result in percent better fuel economy. At the same time, fleet managers are seeing a 20 percent drop in fuel theft losses. Gamification built into the driver interface helps overcome cultural issues. On top of that, the Tata Communications connectivity management portal gives DRVR enhanced visibility and control of usage, so it can focus on what it does best. “The portal is a one-stop shop for managing devices and connectivity,” explains David. That means the company can see how things are operating at a glance. Even more exciting, DRVR will soon be working with Microsoft to incorporate artificial intelligence (AI) into its offer. Used with dashcams this will, for example, explain anomalous driver behaviors such as what happens when a pedestrian unexpectedly steps into the road. David concludes: “We have excellent relationships with Tata Communications and Microsoft, which will get even stronger over time. Our large fleet customers demand a service that’s reliable and consistent. Working together, DRVR, Tata Communications and Microsoft offer that – anywhere and anytime.”

IoT solution serving over 20 firms operating 1,000s of vehicles

26% reduction in fuel consumption and 20% reduction in fuel theft

Countless weeks of negotiating with mobile network operators avoided

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