Monday, April 03, 2006

MobileDataforce, Automotive Services & Handheld PDAs


On occassion I review our MobileDataforce business plans from past years. It is interesting to review how our plans and focuses change over the years based upon our customers requirements and the mobility market. Our earliest business plans never mentioned the automobile services sector, however, in recent years we have become one of the industry leaders in providing mobile solutions for the automotive services industry. The following list contains some of the solutions and applications we have worked on and delivered to our customers:
  1. Vehicle tracking solutions using GPRS and satellite uplinks
  2. VIN decoding solutions with GPS integration to identify automobiles, and locations where the automobiles were found.
  3. Shuttle services applications to identify pick-up and drop-off locations for people and cargo
  4. Dealership applications to record automobile detailing and prep work
  5. Autobody applications to identify work completed on vehicles at dealerships and invoice for it.
  6. Handheld PDA time sheets for recording the work of individuals at automobile dealerships
  7. Auto auction applications to assist in real-time valuing of cars based upon condition found
  8. Vehicle recover applications following hurricanes

Many of these applications involve VIN decoding. This is the process of identifying the specific car based upon bar code scanning the VIN number on the dashboard or door. We have invested many man hours in developing this functionality and the VIN content in our mobile software. This is useful in identifying the exact car, work needed, work completed and invoicing for the work.