Smartphones and apps are having a dramatic impact on the way South Africans relate to, and manage, their vehicles.
Vehicle tracking has long been a staple of South African life, and technology is fast changing how consumers interact with their service providers, and their cars. Where once a vehicle tracking device was only used in emergencies, today, a steady stream of data about the vehicle is sent right to the owner’s phone. Not only does this data ensures that meeting many of life’s basic demands are easier, it also allows owners to take charge of their vehicle’s maintenance and use – even if they aren’t behind the wheel themselves.
A smartphone app has already reaped numerous benefits for Cartrack, a global leader in fleet management, stolen vehicle recovery and insurance telematics, with tracking technology installed in more than 780,000 commercial and private vehicles globally.
Cartrack South Africa CEO, Andre Ittmann, notes how smart apps are generating a positive impact.
“The combination of smartphones and apps has fundamentally shifted both vehicle security and fleet management. For Cartrack, our app is a critical part of our business, as it ensures that we can fulfil a core service to our customers in that they are able to have first-hand knowledge of their vehicles’ status and more effective control of their fleets. Ultimately, these capabilities are a key factor in any modern fleet management service, as it guarantees that our customers benefit simultaneously from control, convenience and improved efficiency.”
Cartrack customers can easily download the company’s app from the app store within seconds. Customers will then receive an email containing all the app information they need, including their login details once they have successfully installed a tracking unit on their vehicle. If they experience login difficulties, the app’s home screen contact button offers a login support option that will put them in touch with a Cartrack representative, who will guide them through the process of retrieving their login details.
Once logged in, the app allows account holders to monitor the status of any number of vehicles attached to the account. The real-time position of the vehicle is shown on a map, while the user can also examine any trips taken previously, including departure and arrival times, trip distance, duration and odometer readings. Additionally, those dealing with insurance companies as a result of an accident will have valuable information about the vehicle’s last position before an accident or event, resulting in claims processes being far faster and easier than before.
“The scope of application on the app is truly remarkable. For example, if you’re a parent and your child is borrowing your car, you can set up an alert from the fleet page that will be sent to your phone should your child be recorded as speeding. Thanks to the tool, most of our consumers have access to technology that only a few years ago was limited to an executive in a corporation,” notes Ittmann.
The Cartrack app design also allows a user to push a button to report a crime or an accident. This service, which is offered in conjunction with ER24, is called Happy Button and is offered to customers at R75 pm. This app gives customers immediate access to roadside and medical assistance, legal services, as well as advice on accommodation and directions.
Ittmann concludes that the company intends to continue excelling in the technology sphere.
“Cartrack is immensely proud of the in-house capabilities of our company, and this factor has allowed us to be hands-on in developing a technologically advanced and user-friendly app. Moving forward, we intend to maintain the tremendous strides we’ve made in technological development and ensure that our end-users benefit from a device that further enhances their relationship with our company and offers numerous personal and financial advantages.”