Rand McNally announced at the Mid-America Trucking Show in Louisville, Ky., that it’s the first to offer an electronic logging device for sale in retail at TravelCenters of America (TA)/Petro. It also launched it’s new Wi-Fi enabled real-time features on it Generation 5 GPS devices, including traffic updates on rural roads.
Amy Krouse, director of public relations for Rand McNally, said Friday its TND 760, a compliant logging and mobile fleet management device, was introduced last year and now sells for $699 as opposed to the original price of $800. Information stations will be set up at all TA/Petro locations for purchasing and explaining the device.
“Instead of having to go through the fleet and sales production, you can go to the store and buy it,” Krouse said, adding it is exclusively available at TA/Petro’s.
The device includes the same navigation as the company’s IntelliRoute truck GPS devices, a press release said.
Rand McNally’s newest Generation 5 truck GPS device, the IntelliRoute TND 520 LM, available in May, will include weather updates, fuel prices powered by gasbuddy.com (which can be displayed in list form by brand, price or distance to a current location or route) and local search, allowing users to type in a phrase such as “truck parts,” which will then display all nearby truck part manufacturers. Krouse said the same works for other categories, including food, and business names. It will provide an address, description and available phone numbers.
Those services are offered free with the device, which will cost $299.99, Krouse said.
In order for the real-time services to work, a driver must have a Smartphone enabled device. Dave Marsh, vice president of research and development for Rand McNally, said a connection is established through Wi-Fi the same way drivers ping the internet for their laptops or other devices off their cell phone.
“It searches for a hot spot, so there’s no pairing like you’d see with a blue tooth,” Marsh said.
Another additional real-time feature called “Traffic Everywhere,” costs $19.95 a year, Krouse said.
Traffic Everywhere allows drivers to be alerted to traffic, road construction and any other possible delays in traffic on both major and rural roads, Krouse said.
During Rand McNally’s slide show presentation, Krouse spoke about the need for the traffic feature because of “drivers wasting 38 hours annually in traffic, gridlock on the nation’s roads,” which costs drivers an estimated $27 billion in wasted time and fuel.
Traffic Everywhere also provides information on possible big event, like a concert or a conference, its location and the time it is scheduled for so drivers can avoid the area, Krouse said.
All of the updated real-time features can also be uploaded for free onto its IntelliRoute TND 729 LM, which debuted in June 2012 and costs $399.99.
The company also launched its Load Board Service for IntelliRoute TND owners, powered by Getloaded, a web-based freight matching service, allowing drivers to view available freight in an area and post their truck availability.
In May, more than 100,000 Rand McNally registered users will be able to access the service on a link posted to the Rand McNally Dock, a software TND owners can update their devices, according to a news release.
According to a news release: “All current and new TND owners will be able to take advantage of a 10-day free trial, and thereafter subscribe to unlimited service on getloaded.com for a discounted monthly fee. Once a driver activates the account, the service will enable searching for freight available in a particular area or at a particular destination. Searches are returned with information such as ‘full load’ (Full) or ‘less than truckload’ (LTL) mileages, type of trailer required and pay scale. Drivers will be able to post their availability for a load by trailer type, or by origin/destination.”
Krouse said Rand McNally is provided in International trucks, but no other trucking companies.
“We are partnering and continuing to see partnerships in the OEM channels,” Krouse said. “We have a lot of guys that say, ‘This is what came with the truck, but I want my own anyway,’” referring to Rand McNally.
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