Guide to IoT in Transportation (+Examples)

Frank Greer
Sep 20, 2021 11:56:34 AM

The Internet of things (IoT) is improving the safety and efficiency of both public and private transport, benefitting municipalities and businesses operating in the transportation industry. The market growth projections for IoT in transportation are astounding, though not surprising, given the high demand across all segments of the industry. From a starting point of nearly $174 million in 2020, the global market is expected to grow to $270 million in just five years. Here’s how businesses are using IoT to revolutionize the transportation industry, and where we see opportunities for future growth potential.

How is IoT Transforming Transportation? 

Nearly every segment of the transportation industry is leveraging the benefits of the rich data analytic output from IoT. When you look at air, railway, road, and marine transportation, there is high demand for IoT used in a multitude of applications. Public transportation is benefiting greatly from the advancements IoT offers as well as private industry. 

Has your car alerted you when you need an oil change? We can thank IoT for real-time condition monitoring, notifying us of routine maintenance needs as well as mechanical failures. Have you been to an airport or large parking lot and seen real-time signage announcing what floor has open spaces, or where to go to find a space? IoT is powering smart parking innovations, improving efficiency and the customer experience.

Some other advancements in IoT for transportation include predictive maintenance, improving fuel efficiency for all transportation machinery, connectivity, 24/7 monitoring, and even location tracking. It’s not just cars, trucks, and buses that leverage IoT — trains, ships, and planes do as well. 

Benefits of IoT in Transportation

When you think about all that IoT enables, it’s no surprise that it delivers a wide variety of benefits, including the following:

  • Greater Safety —Monitoring conditions, temperatures, speeds, and the number of vehicles improves safety.  
  • A Better Customer Experience — Customers can more efficiently plan routes and identify parking availability.
  • Operational Efficiency — Municipalities and businesses can more effectively monitor and maintain infrastructure, develop more efficient processes, reduce operating costs, and improve capacity.
  • Reduce Environmental Impact — Reducing energy usage and traffic congestion help to alleviate environmental impact.   

Examples of IoT in Transportation

IoT is being used in innovative ways across all segments of the transportation industry. Here are some of our favorite customer examples.

  • Traffic MonitoringGRIDSMART, a Zipit customer, creates connected traffic management solutions to help municipalities make roads safer while reducing congestion. They use our connectivity management platform to simplify carrier integrations and SIM activations while mitigating cellular overages. 
  • Fleet MonitoringPursuitAlert provides safety notifications and fleet monitoring for law enforcement agencies. They leverage Zipit’s IoT device management and connectivity technologies for a cellular network connection, enabling reliable and essential communication.
  • Consumer Wi-Fi HotspotsMagnadyne offers RV Link Wi-Fi hotspots for RVs. They use the Zipit billing platform to enable subscriptions to this service.
  • Industrial Wi-Fi HotspotsAllerio provides in-vehicle connectivity for first responders using Zipit’s platform for multi-carrier support.  
  • Smart ParkingCleverciti takes smart parking solutions to a new level with Zipit, reducing search traffic and vehicle emissions to provide increased convenience and a healthier city environment.

Many other companies are doing interesting things in this space. G.E. Transportation (now part of Wabtec Corporation) is innovating our railways, leveraging the power of IoT for connectivity, real-time condition monitoring, and predictive analytics for railroads. The Miami airport is empowered by IoT, helping travelers get directions, flight updates, and even scan their boarding passes. We’ll continue to see more companies and municipalities leveraging the power of IoT to make transportation safer, easier, and more efficient.

The Future of IoT in Transportation

It’s exciting to think about where the transportation industry will go from here, empowered by the capabilities and opportunities available with IoT. Here are some of what we consider the most interesting technological advancements in the making:

  • New Products Solving Problems — As improvements are made to data availability, management, and analytics, new products will be developed to harness this data to solve some of the most challenging problems in both public and private transportation. 
  • Greater Visibility — As real-time data becomes easier to access and analyze, municipalities and companies will gain greater visibility into operations, allowing them to optimize. 
  • Autonomous Vehicles — While autonomous vehicles have a ways to go, IoT technology will be used to improve their sensing of the environment, enabling unassisted driving.
  • V2V (vehicle-to-vehicle communication) — Vehicles will be using IoT to communicate with each other. For example, IoT can help to determine right-of-way automatically.
  • V2X (vehicle-to-infrastructure communication) — With IoT, vehicles will be able to identify open parking opportunities, and traffic lights can be set to sense when first responders are approaching and change accordingly.  
  • Improved Personalization — Commuters will be able to use IoT to optimize travel on roadways and via public transportation systems. 

The opportunities for IoT in transportation are limitless, and we’re honored to be part of the advancements and improvements being created through IoT.

How Zipit Helps Transportation Companies Stay Connected with IoT

Zipit works to support manufacturers of IoT transportation solutions in the most streamlined manner possible on premier networks. We offer tier-one carrier connectivity all over the world from the top cellular providers. Transportation companies looking for an advantage using IoT are leveraging Zipit’s intuitive and sophisticated multi-carrier platform for billing, managing their device connections, and more.

Want to know more about Zipit’s robust yet intuitive IoT platform to connect and monetize IoT solutions for the transportation industry? Contact us to discuss your company's unique needs. We’re happy to offer insights based on our extensive experience.

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