How is the price of GPS tracking solutions determined?
The price of GPS tracking solutions is determined by four components:
• Installation of tracking devices
• Monthly subscription fee for use of the web application and mobile communications
• Purchase price of tracking devices
• Tracking device rental fees
Regardless of whether you opt for renting or purchase of you device, its installation always entails additional expense. If this is not listed separately in the case of rent, the rental agreement or the general terms and conditions of the service should be read carefully. Whether you should opt for purchasing or renting the tracking device will be discussed below. Let us first take a look at the price components separately.
How is the fee for the installation of a tracking device determined?
Probably the simplest answer is that the installation fee is proportional to the complexity of the job. If the client only requires location tracking, the installation will be completed at the most within an hour and the lowest rate will be charged. Here, the technician needs to find a suitable place for the tracking device and the antennae, connect the device to a mains and wire in the ignition.
The complexity of the installation increases when fuel consumption needs to be measured. Depending on the client’s wishes and the type of the vehicle, several options can be considered here.
In passenger cars and commercial vans, fuel data can be conveniently obtained from the CAN bus. The installation of a CAN connection takes approximately 1.5 hours. In addition to fuel level, information provided by the CAN bus includes engine RPM and other useful parameters. In different vehicle types, connection points are located in different spots, which requires the technician to have the necessary preliminary knowledge.
Although in trucks, too, fuel consumption readings are often obtained from the CAN bus, much more accurate measurements can be made using autonomous fuel level sensors. Connecting fuel level sensors to a tracking device has become a popular solution that is widely used in heavy goods vehicles, construction equipment, quarry equipment, agricultural machinery and other special-purpose vehicles, including locomotives.
The installation of a fuel level sensor means mounting the sensor unit inside the fuel tank, running a cable from the sensor to the device, making the necessary connections and calibrating the sensor. On the average, this can accomplished within 3, 4 or 5 hours, depending on whether the vehicle has 1, 2 or 3 fuel tanks. However, installation procedure may sometimes require extra time and involve extra cost due to unforeseen circumstances such as the need to remove various covers or even to dismount the fuel tank itself.
Clients often have additional requirements, such as the installation of a driver identification system, alarm or extra sensor, or the creation of a monitoring solution for various on-board systems (crane, parking heater, etc.). In these cases, we will provide a separate quote regarding the additional work required.
- The cost of installation will be zero if what you purchase is a plug-and-play device to be connected to the vehicle’s OBD port – a connection that can be made by just about anybody.
The upshot is that the cost of installation is determined by the time it requires and depends on the number and complexity of the nodes to be installed. It is always listed as a separate item in our price quotes.
The price of our hardware packages depends entirely on what the client needs. The primary factor is the desired functionality of the controller unit or its intended purpose of use. By price, our hardware can be grouped as follows:
- Positioning only
- Positioning + fuel consumption monitoring with fuel level sensors
- Positioning + fuel consumption monitoring with fuel level sensors + two-way data communication + Garmin navigator
- Positioning + monitoring of fuel consumption and other parameters via CAN bus
- Positioning + monitoring of fuel consumption via CAN bus + remote downloading of tachograph data
- Autonomous, battery-powered GPS trackers
- IP rated GPS trackers
Considering that the device packages may additionally include different switches and sensors, thermometres, engine RPM detectors, RFID readers, keyboards for changing the vehicle’s operational status, etc., the number of possible combinations becomes rather large.
The most important item in the device package is the controller. Controllers differ from each other in terms of their features, capacity and price. Even the most powerful unit that can manage a large number of connections may be used for positioning only, although it is certainly impractical.
Even when you are seeking the least expensive option, it will be prudent to spend a minute or two to consider the likelihood of any future need to, say, measure the engine RPM or exploit other useful features of our systems. It is important to bear in mind that your choice of controller may considerably limit your future options, since our controllers are designed to support varying ranges of features.
As you can see from the above, tracking solutions can have a wide variety of configurations. For this reason, we advise customers to take a broader look at their present and future needs before asking for a quote.
What is covered by the monthly fee of the service?
To sum it up briefly, for the monthly service fee the client will be provided an exemplary service complete with technical support and continuous development of the system. The monthly fee also includes the cost of a GSM SIM card.
Important keywords here include the following:
- Maintenance of the server park
- Stable 24/7 operation of the software platform
- Keeping the system operational 24/7
- Backup and restoration of data and system components
- Measures to ensure the security and functioning of the service platform
- Technical and analytical support
- Continuous development of the system as a whole
- Development of additional modules
- Ensuring customer satisfaction
- Ensuring the system’s ease of use
The monthly service fee depends on the range of software modules activated for the client’s use. In addition to location tracking and fuel consumption monitoring – the two staple choices – we offer reservation, routing, two-way communication with drivers, remote downloading of tachograph data, data integration, communication of work orders, driver identification, etc. A large number of active modules implies extensive use of the system’s functionality by the client, which in its turn requires the round-the-clock availability of corresponding technical and analytical support.
The monthly service fee includes a charge for the GSM SIM card. Different rates will apply depending on the region where the vehicles operate (in Estonia, EU countries, non-EU countries). Customers don’t have to worry about the SIM cards, we will pre-install them and make the necessary service arrangements.
Rental of devices
It is always possible to rent tracking devices either for a fixed or unspecified term.
If you are considering device rental, please read carefully the rental agreement, especially the terms of its termination, and the general terms and conditions of the service.
Rental fees reflect the capacity and value of devices, as do prices at which devices are available for purchase. Rental fees do not include the cost of installation.
The service provider has made an investment to offer rental devices. Their cost recovery period is determined by the company internally. Typically, the period is set at 1.5 to 2 years. At the end of the period, the client’s regular rental payments to the service provider will have covered the manufacturing cost of the device and a certain markup. The device itself, however, will always remain the property of the service provider.