Cambridge Consultants has developed a service for car hiring companies that tracks and monitors the car during the entire hiring period, to allow for a clear picture of what went on during the hire period. The wireless app-based DropTag DRIVE service consists of a small tag fixed to front window that can be connected to any smartphone via Bluetooth.
Many people have had nervous moments when dropping off their rental car. Going through their mind are damages they have not seen before, not caused by them, but for which they might be blamed nonetheless. To relief both the rental companies and the renters from this stress, product design and development firm Cambridge Consultants has developed a new monitoring service.
The DropTag DRIVE service is based on the firm’s DropTag condition monitoring technology developed to, among others, monitor drugs in transit. The technology consists of a low-cost* small tag to be fixed to the rear window, which continuously monitors the car – from sensing accelerations, to impacts, to what happens when the car is parked.
The tag can be connected to any smartphone via an app using Bluetooth to send the information to both the driver and the rental company. For the rental company this means real-time visibility of the way its cars are driven, providing useful information for vehicle maintenance and turnaround times. For renters, as the tag is always’ on, they will no longer be blamed for incidents that happened while the car was stationary. In addition, the app will give the driver the ‘all-clear’ after an incident-free ride, allowing them to simply drop off the car, without any hassle.
“DropTag DRIVE involves precise sensing at a level of performance you wouldn’t believe possible in a consumable – it’s comparable to devices costing thousands of times more,” explains Tom Lawrie-Fussey, DropTag Product Manager at Cambridge Consultants. “This is combined with low-cost electronics and sophisticated power management so that a tiny battery lasts for more than a year. The tag weighs only 25g – yet it can unlock many of the unknowns of the car hire world.”
* In high volumes, the cost of the DropTag DRIVE service for a hire car company works out at just £1 per tag per month – with the reusable tags lasting more than a year.