TomTom GO Navigation now has essential trucking features, here's what truckers like about it
Earlier this month, TomTom rolled out a bunch of new features for its specialist subscription-based navigation app, TomTom GO Navigation. These features will see the app become more useful to truckers and delivery drivers. But why are the special features so important to truckers? We spoke to some to find out.
But before we hear what truckers had to say, the new features…
TomTom GO Navigation is best known as the mapping and location tech company’s flagship navigation app. It’s subscription based and provides all the specialist features that you’d expect from a sat nav device that’s designed for drivers. It’s very much a reimagining of the personal navigation device (PND) that TomTom is well known for.
Some of TomTom GO Nav’s best loved features include various routing options, offline maps, lane guidance, a route bar, speed limit and speed camera warnings, to name a handful. If you want to learn more, check out this article we wrote last year.
TomTom launches GO Navigation for truckers bringing a host of features specifically designed for professional drivers.
While those features are great for drivers of regular cars, they fall short of the special needs of commercial truck drivers.
But with TomTom’s latest announcement about the app, TomTom GO Navigation drivers have the option to subscribe to a truck-specific package (at present, it's only available on Android). This option includes additional key features to help professional truck drivers get from A to B to C and beyond, with less stress, hassle and fewer mishaps.
As with all TomTom sat navs, after programming a route, drivers will see an accurate ETA. For the trucking version of GO Nav, the ETA calculation takes into account the fact it's a truck and may be subject to different speed limits, for example.
But perhaps the main features allows drivers to input the dimensions of their vehicle. For those driving large vehicles or carrying unusually sized loads, this is essential.
TomTom GO Navigation for truckers allows drivers to input their vehicle’s dimensions, max speed and cargo.
By inputting the dimensions of their vehicle, truck drivers will be able to take advantage of the additional contextual data that TomTom has on roads and their type.
Some roads simply aren’t fit for trucks, others actively deny all truck traffic through specific regulations despite being otherwise passable, while other roads only block commercial trucks. Privately run vehicles would still be allowed to pass.
This contextual information makes up a crucial part of TomTom’s routing algorithms. Using the vehicle characteristics input by the driver, TomTom GO Navigation’s routing algorithm will avoid anything that might be impassible for the truck — including fuel stations, as not all are suitable for exceptionally tall vehicles.
The key features for truckers include live traffic, truck parking, weight and heigh restrictions and more.
Subscribers of the TomTom GO Nav truck plan will also be able to include the type of cargo that they’re carrying on their wagon.
There are strict regulations all over the world which dictate what kinds of cargo and goods can travel on certain roads. For example, you’re not allowed to take radioactive material or explosives through cities — obviously. In some cases, what a truck carries as cargo, might be the reason it has to take a 100-mile (160-km) detour.
If trucks don’t follow the correct route, not only could it result in the cargo not making it to the destination on time, but it could also result in hefty fines for breaking road traffic laws.
For truckers, they might miss out on bonuses and payment if they don't meet their targets.
As regular car drivers, we probably never think about things like this, but for truck drivers, their daily life depends on it.
What truckers say
Indeed, having quick access to truck-specific routing is crucial for professional truckers. As a number of TomTom sponsored truckers tell me.
Eline, a professional trucker from the Netherlands, explains, “With the TomTom GO Navigation app I always have truck navigation with me. The correct route is determined based on my specific vehicle data. On my route I see, among other things, where truck parking spaces, gas stations and restaurants are. From now on I can always spontaneously go out with a truck if necessary, wherever I am.”
Eline is a trucker from the Netherlands, and loves TomTom GO Nav for trucking as it helps her find dedicated parking.
Luka, who's from Germany and drives trucks around Europe, echoes what Eline says. He points out how having all these features in an app — alongside conventional vehicle navigation — is incredibly useful, as professional drivers often drive different vehicles day to day, or week to week.
“I often switch between cars, vans and trucks. So, this app is perfect for me,” Luka says.
For professional drivers though, this will all sound quite elementary. But it’s surprising how few navigation apps on the market offer features like these. They’re not just a nice to have, they’re a requirement for the complex planning that fleet vehicle routes are subject to.
Naturally, these extra features require a lot of extra data and map detail to work accurately. So, this trucker subscription comes at a little more of a premium than the regular car version of TomTom GO Navigation, costing €99.99 per year, or €14.99 per month.
The truck version, though, still includes all the conventional features of the regular version, so it can be used in a car too.
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