Your Vehicle Getting to Know You Through On Board Diagnostics

OBDIISince 1996, all domestic vehicles have been equipped with an on board diagnostics port (OBDII) brought about due to the Clean Air Act Of 1970. To meet these standards, manufacturers turned to electronically controlled fuel feed and ignition systems. Sensors measured engine performance and adjusted the systems to provide minimum pollution. These sensors were also accessed to provide early diagnostic assistance. In 1988, the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) set a standard connector plug and set of diagnostic test signals. The EPA adapted most of their standards from the SAE on-board diagnostic programs and recommendations. OBD-II is an expanded set of standards and practices developed by SAE and adopted by the EPA and CARB (California Air Resources Board) for implementation by January 1, 1996.
The earliest versions of the on board diagnostic systems provided a simplistic “idiot” lighting system warning the driver of general engine trouble. However, the advent of the microprocessors of the 1980’s and 1990’s changed everything. Modern OBDII connectivity provides more than 100 system parameters providing precise diagnostics and efficiencies. These efficiencies provide a wealth of information not only to the service center but to companies that provide ancillary services.

GPS Tracking Users Benefiting From Driving Behavior Monitoring

GPS Tracking has become a valuable resource to consumers and business owners alike. The ability to understand the whereabouts of family members such as new teenage drivers or elderly parents provides peace of mind. For businesses, knowing when vehicles and employees arrive and depart job sites as well as monitoring driving behavior saves both time and money. These GPS tracking manufacturers are capturing information provided by the OBD port and incorporating it into a true resource manager. The OBD compatible tracking device not only transmits continuous ten (10) second positioning updates, but also provides mileage, ignition on/off status, VIN number, engine idling, harsh breaking, rapid acceleration, low fuel, etc. All of these features provide fleet tracking managers as well as concerned consumers a better understanding of their vehicles and operators.

Posted in Fleet Tracking, GPS Applications, GPS tracking, Teen Tracking, Vehicle Tracking | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

GPS Tracking Used to Keep Family Members In View

Costa Mesa Close

Conventional wisdom often associates GPS tracking with strictly surveillance.  However, long time users of this technology will tell you that they cannot live without it.  Having true live updating of a loved one’s whereabouts provides peace of mind that was unattainable not long ago.  Consider a new teen driver, first-time out of state student, or an elderly parent.  These are all examples where family members are in the need to know especially on today’s roads.

Driving today is much more dangerous than compared to just 20 years ago.  Modern conveniences such as cell phone technology include an array of driver distractions that include text messaging, MP3 music players, telephone calls, etc.  Statistics show that these distractions are costing more and more lives each year.

Even though these devices provide an indirect link to the whereabouts of the individual, the mere outreach alone can reduce the margin of safety behind the wheel.  This is where real-time GPS tracking devices provide the most value.

Online Tracking And Mobile Tracking Applications

The advent of the internet and high resolution satellite imaging has provided the user fingertip access to a vehicle’s location.  Online secure portals eliminate embedded software or operating system limitations.  The simplicity of entering log in credentials takes you directly to the last known position whether the vehicle is parked or currently in motion.  Continuous updates as fast as every few seconds provides fluent satellite map positioning.  However, not all of us have the luxury to be sitting at a computer.  Modern GPS tracking manufacturers also include a mobile application to work on Android, Windows, and Apple (Safari) phones and tablets providing many of the same features available at the desktop.

Proximity Alerts And Warnings Keep You Posted

Having the ability to easily log into the portal and locate the vehicle is convenient enough.  However, many GPS tracking manufacturers have built in the ability to alert the user when a vehicle has entered and/or exited a location, speeding, low battery etc.  Notification can be sent via text message and/or email.  An example of this would be an email alert when a new teen driver arrives at school or home.  These alerts provide a constant reminder and peace of mind when you need it most.

Next Generation GPS Tracking

Sync ecommReal-time GPS tracking devices were introduced in the mid 1990’s but required 12V vehicle power and more permanent installation.  Devices today are more portable with lithium-ion battery technology but can also be wired into the vehicle.  The latest enhancement incorporates the vehicle’s On Board Diagnostics (OBD) port.  All vehicles built after 1996 include this port and gives service centers access to the vehicle’s computer.  More than 100 parameters are monitored through this port and the new OBD GPS tracking devices take advantage of some of this information.  Powered by the vehicle with a simple plug anyone can install, these devices can also monitor harsh breaking, rapid acceleration, low battery, etc.

GPS tracking devices not only provide the location of the vehicle but now incorporate the tools necessary to understand driving habits and ultimately promote safety behind the wheel.

Posted in GPS Applications, GPS tracking, GPS Tracking Markets, Teen Tracking, Vehicle Tracking | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Red Light Traffic Signal Cameras and GPS Tracking

GPS tracking red lightRed light cameras are becoming more popular for states and municipalities. Installed based upon the foundation of “safety”, these red lights actually create anxiety and indecision as drivers are faced with the fear of the impending changing light cycle.

When drivers are actively monitored at these lights, they temporarily focus on the light status as opposed to the driving conditions around them. Drivers are more apt to ensure a changing light cycle causes an immediate stop reducing the margin of safety. Our current driving environment is filled with distractions from the use of smart phone technology, in-vehicle technology, and the day to day driver in a hurry. Understanding driving habits can be the key to improving safety. GPS tracking provides this gap. Red light cameras realistically generate revenue for the city/state and present a geographical dangerous roadway hot spot. In actuality, what has occurred is that red light cameras reduce safety and is counterproductive in its designed purpose.

Expansion of street cameras has been considered under the guise of safety. In some cases, this makes sense. However, civil liberties should always override governmental oversight. There are other technologies at the consumer and professional business level that can be used to monitor driving habits not for the purposes of intrusion but true safety and efficiency.

GPS Tracking For Consumers And Businesses

GPS tracking devices have been around since the early 1990’s and have given tens of thousands of parents’ peace of mind and knowledge of their teenager or out of state student’s whereabouts. Businesses are now able to understand when their employees arrive on the job site, routes traveled, and fuel consumption at a time of record fuel costs.

Unlike street level cameras, GPS tracking devices are focused on the driver at hand. Designed to understand the immediate location and driving habits to improve efficiency and safety.

Posted in GPS tracking, GPS Tracking Markets, law enforcement, Vehicle Tracking | Leave a comment

All School Buses To Be Equipped With GPS Trackers?

school-busesSchool Bus Tracking Should Be Mandatory

School buses have hardly been a good example of efficient motor vehicles. Most school buses are loud, blow out thick black smoke from the exhaust, don’t offer seat belts and have horrible fuel efficiency. And yet these are the vehicles that we feel are the best for our tax dollars and children’s transportation safety. Clearly, the modern day school bus has seen little innovative advancement in the past fifty years, but that could all change if school districts started requiring that GPS tracker devices be equipped on all passenger buses transporting students.

Gas prices have skyrocketed and won’t be heading south anytime in the short, immediate or distant future. This is a huge concern for not only everyday drivers but also taxpayers left with the burden of paying for fuel consumption of school district vehicles such as school buses. Obviously, the best solution would be the development of smart buses capable of running directly off of electricity or some form of hybrid technology, but this is not going to happen anytime soon. Therefore, GPS tracking devices should be used instead, but not just for reducing fuel consumption but also improving route selection, driver efficiency and student safety.

How GPS Trackers Can Improve School Bus Operation

  • Detect excessive vehicle idling
  • Make certain drivers are making all stops
  • Alert school officials if bus drivers are speeding
  • Determine if shortest routes are being utilized

Real-time tracking devices can eliminate excessive fuel consumption caused from poor route selection or vehicle idling, but most importantly they can improve student passenger safety by monitoring bus driver speeds. Operating any motor vehicle at a high rate of speed increases the possibility of an accident. Simply put, speeding can have very serious consequences. GPS tracking devices provide the solution to making sure bus drivers don’t engage in unsafe driving practices such as speeding by documenting how fast a driver is operating a bus every few seconds. In fact, school officials can program speed alerts so they can be notified if a bus driver is going too fast. This gets bad bus drivers off the streets and keeps student passengers safe.

School buses need to be modernized. There is no denying that the standard school bus is far beyond out-dated. But until smart buses debut, GPS vehicle trackers can at least make sure buses on the road are operating safely and as efficiently as they possibly can.

Posted in GPS Applications, GPS tracking, GPS Tracking Markets, Teen Tracking, Vehicle Tracking | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Vehicle Trackers Without Service Fees

ebay 4GPS Loggers Provide Affordable Monitoring Option

When it comes to GPS technology the premiere monitoring solutions are those that update in real-time at a very fast rate of frequency. These are the types of GPS trackers that can be accessed remotely from web-enabled devices, provide speed or geo-fenced alerts, offer vehicle diagnostic data and so much more. Unfortunately, these real-time systems also come with hefty cost because in order to access live positional information a monthly data plan is required. This means a small business or parent would have to pay roughly $500.00 per year in service fees in to operate a real-time tracker that updated position approximately every ten (10) seconds.

So what if a person doesn’t want to pay the monthly tracking data cost?

Are real-time devices without monthly service plans available on the market?

All GPS devices that provide real-time tracking data require a monthly service fee. There is absolutely no way of transmitting data in a way that is free to the user. A good comparison would be like having a cell phone that could place calls without any cost. Sending data costs money and that is why real-time GPS trackers require a monthly service fee. However, a GPS monitoring solution without fees is available for consumers and businesses with trackers categorized as GPS data loggers.

Data Logger GPS Systems

Data loggers cannot transmit data in real-time and therefore would not be helpful in applications such as senior tracking or auto-theft prevention. However, data loggers can record movement and driving activity with precision and detail every single second, making the trackers perfect for businesses wanting to observe employee driving habits or parents looking to oversee teen driving. These means the technology can still be very advantageous to users who want a GPS solution without breaking the proverbial bank.

If data loggers can’t be viewed from a mobile phone or via the Internet how are people supposed to see the tracking data?

Data loggers don’t require fees because the data is moved from the device to a user’s computer manually. This is done via USB connection between the GPS device and the computer that will be used to monitor the data. The data from the GPS tracking device, once downloaded, will automatically be superimposed over a satellite image program where the user can see everywhere their vehicle has been.

Real-time GPS devices are still the most preferred tracking solutions for most people in need of a personal, vehicle or asset monitoring system. However, it is good to know that a more cost-effective option without monitoring service fees is available with data loggers for those working on a tighter budget.

Posted in GPS Applications, GPS tracking, GPS Tracking Markets, Vehicle Tracking | Tagged , | Leave a comment