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4 ways IoT is driving the future of transportation

By Max Burkhalter
December 2, 2021

Transportation is important. It's not only how we get around, it's how vital products, medicines, vaccines and other goods are distributed to the public.

When vehicles go down for repair or shipments are delayed, there can be significant consequences. Keeping the whole fleet up and running is paramount to productivity.

Thanks to the internet of things (IoT), the transportation sector is reinventing the way it drives success. From long-haul truckers to air travel to public transit, smart technologies are making things faster, safer and more convenient. Here are a few significant industry use cases.

Fleet management
Whether you run a taxi service, a trucking company, an airline or a bus company, it's important to keep track of your fleet. A cargo bay full of goods isn't something you want to go missing. But with so many vehicles in a single company's fleet, how can you manage them all at once?

IoT devices are answering that call throughout the many areas of the transportation sector. With 5G connectivity, especially, organizations are more efficiently and effectively managing their fleets — to the benefit of their customers, as well.

By attaching IoT sensors to vehicles, the company can see its real-time location. In turn, this data can be collected and put to use improving performance, according to Intel.

For example, not only can a trucking company keep tabs on its vehicles, it can also collect information on driving times and alert drivers when they should schedule a rest break, slow down or avoid an accident ahead. Consequently, truckers are safer, faster and more efficient.

From a cost savings perspective, IoT sensors also can collect data on distance traveled and fuel consumption. This helps the business identify areas where fuel is wasted, thus reducing overhead costs.

Many businesses already use radio-frequency identification (RFID). This type of IoT device records metadata throughout its life span and sends that information back to the company.

For example, plenty of businesses are using RFID to enhance the customer experience. Through tracking and tracing, a company like UPS can give customers a real-time update as to where their deliveries are on the map. Customers, in turn, can plan ahead for their arrival or see in real-time if a driver is delivering to the wrong address.

4 ways IoT is driving the future of transportation4 ways IoT is driving the future of transportation

Public transportation
Similarly, public transportation is pioneering IoT to provide a better product to its patrons. Many cities are installing IoT sensors on trains and busses so that customers can see accurate arrival times. Those sensors can also alert patrons when their ride has been delayed due to an accident, scheduling change or other disruption.

Thus, customers can plan their trips in advance with greater satisfaction. In some cases, IoT-enabled vehicles are equipped with automated fare collection systems to speed up the onboarding process.

Predictive maintenance
With a combination of IoT and artificial intelligence, the transportation sector is becoming more resilient to potential disruptions. AI's machine learning capabilities open the door for predictive analytics to help companies avoid damages, accidents and other derailments to productivity.

Companies like G.E. are using predictive analytics to forecast maintenance, per Built In. With real-time metrics on vehicle conditioning, a business can predict when maintenance will be needed. As a result, organizations can make sure their entire fleet is up and running as smoothly as possible. Better yet, they can keep drivers, pilots, operators and patrons safe on their journey.

To learn more about how Perle can support IoT in transportation, check out our customer success stories.


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