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On Track to Improved Communication

Road Trip

I test drove TeleNavTrack using a Motorola GPS-enabled, Java-enabled phone with the TeleNavTrack software installed (the phone must be supported by Nextel). All administration is accomplished via a browser-based interface that controls server applications running at TeleNav's NOC (network operations center).

When a driver checks in using the software on the phone, it sends his location to the hosted system in the NOC. The TeleTrack software periodically interacts with the back-end systems to download messages and report on location. One caveat: If the driver does not check in, the phone does not send its location, rendering the system useless, so be sure you have a policy in place for drivers to check in and out as they perform their duties. The check-in and -out need to occur where GPS is operable--usually outside.

The system polls the phone on a configurable interval and collects location data automatically while the driver is checked in. The driver manually sends replies to dispatches via the TeleNavTrack software installed on the phone. To test the system,

I labeled a phone "NWC" and sent it on the road with contributing editor Don MacVittie.

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