Decision support: Is online-only truck GPS navigation right for telematics applications?
The truck GPS navigation MapTrip Truck is now available as an online-only version that does not require bulky road maps on the device. So should every telematics user switch to the new version now? Here is some background information to help you decide.
For a quick overview
The functional scope of a pure online GPS navigation is identical to a normal GPS navigation with locally stored road maps.
Online navigation is much easier to distribute to a large number of devices because the large road maps are missing. For installation, only an approx. 150MB installation file has to be transferred to the devices.
However, the online-only truck GPS navigation works with an internet connection (see below for details). Therefore, if you travel a lot in areas with poor internet connection, you should choose the hybrid version.
If your truck GPS navigation works purely online, make sure you have a suitable mobile phone contract so that there are no nasty surprises in terms of costs. Here you can find more information about data consumption.
Map updates no longer play a role in both the online and hybrid versions, because the Navi always accesses the latest data on our servers. The effort for map updates is therefore not necessary for both versions.
Detailed technical background
What is offline navigation?
The oldtimers among the navis work as pure offline navigation. In this case, the navigation device has no connection to the outside world and nothing works without road maps stored locally on the navigation device.
The map data is needed for displaying, searching for addresses and calculating routes. At some point, the maps become outdated and need to be updated. In the simplest case, only memory cards need to be replaced for updating. On other devices, however, the road maps on the internal memory must first be deleted and then replaced. For large fleets with hundreds or even thousands of devices, this is a very time-consuming job!
What is online navigation?
An online navigation does not require local road maps, but loads all the necessary data via the Internet.
An online navi does not calculate a route itself but has this work done by a server. It requests the route to the destination via an Internet connection and then downloads the complete directions. The road maps for display are downloaded as needed and continuously reloaded while the vehicle is on the road. Online navigation can thus be fully integrated into a powerful backend with many functions. On the other hand, it requires an Internet connection, at least to request directions.
What is hybrid navigation?
Hybrid navigation is an online navigation that additionally has road maps stored locally on the device.
In this configuration, the local street maps serve as a backup in case directions need to be started at a location without an Internet connection. To reduce data consumption, the hybrid navigator also uses the local road maps for display. All other functions are the same as for online navigation.
How high is the data consumption of an online truck navigation?
In online-only mode, the truck navigation consumes about 50% more data than the hybrid version. With a mileage of 5.000km and a usage time of 100h you can say a consumption of 270MB per month for the online version as a rule of thumb.
By caching the loaded road data, the data consumption decreases if a vehicle moves frequently in the same geographical area. A vehicle that always travels to new areas will have a higher data consumption.