​Navman Wireless takes its telematics back-end to AWS

Work is progressing to integrate Navman's technology with those of stablemate Teletrac.
Written by Rob O'Neill, Contributor

GPS fleet and asset tracking developer Navman Wireless is migrating its back end software to the cloud, with the UK business already hosted on AWS for the last month.

The Australian back end servers are expected to migrate from Telstra's datacentre to AWS's Sydney datacentre in the fourth quarter. North American systems will remain current provider Data pipe.

In New Zealand another strategy is required because there is no local AWS datacentre. Another cloud provider will be needed to address data sovereignty concerns, Navman Wireless's Asia Pacific president Ian Daniel said.

In March, it was announced Navman Wireless and one-time rival Teletrac, which have both been owned by New York-listed Danaher Corporation since 2013, would merge.

Daniel said the two companies would eventually develop one product base and unified platform but at the moment the effort is towards building a common gateway to protect customers' existing investment and experience.

Daniel is unfazed by attempts to disrupt the telematics market, which still mostly uses proprietary hardware for applications such as fleet and asset management, through app development for commodity smart devices.

"Applications from a tracking perspective sitting on mobile device have been around for a hell of a long time and no one's really commercialised that in the telematics space.

"There's a lot of people talking about it. A lot of people have been talking about it for four or five years but no one has nailed it," he said.

It's too easy for people to turn off the device or for them to run out of battery power or coverage, he said. Because telematics applications produce data required for business analytics applications, monitoring and decision-making, that can't be allowed to happen.

Navman Wireless's Qube tracking device uses mobile networks be default, but can revert to satellite when those are not available.

Daniel said customers are looking for more workflow and value add from their telematics investments.

"People are getting far more savvy and the market is getting up to speed understanding how to leverage telematics and integrate it into their day-to-day operations and how to leverage workflow out of that to get far better business benefits," he said.

Daniel said Teletrac was strong in the US and UK while Navman was also strong in the UK as well as Australia and New Zealand and also had a presence in the US.

Both Navman and Teletrac, which are retaining their separate brands, offer software-as-a-service solutions.

Daniel said the Navman Teletrac combination will have a combined 500,000 connections and 40,000 customers this year, making it one of the biggest players in the industry.

Navman was founded in New Zealand, originally as Talon Technology, in 1986 and has been through several ownership changes and splits since.

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