Every company that interacts with physical assets, such as automobiles, product shipments, or rental equipment, requires a system to track their vehicles’ location. Today, IoT asset monitoring is gaining traction as a cost-effective and dynamic solution to keep track of mobile assets. According to a recent report, 267 million RFID/asset trackers will be in use worldwide by 2027.
What Is the Definition of IoT Asset Tracking?
The Internet of Things (IoT) is a system of interrelated computing devices, mechanical and digital machines, objects, animals, or people that are provided with unique identifiers and the ability to transfer data over a network without requiring human-to-human or human-to-computer interaction.
Asset tracking (as opposed to inventory tracking) is concerned with a firm’s reusable resources, such as machinery, cars, reusable containers, and other tools—basically, any asset on the move that the organization does not want to lose or steal.
IoT asset tracking entails attaching sensors to resources in order to track their movements.
The sensors feature GPS chips, which work by communicating coordinates to GPS servers via wireless network technology (determined by contact with a GPS satellite).
Real-time asset tracking necessitates near-constant communication, which is typically provided by cellular technology. Sensors transmit location data, which is received and stored in an asset tracking management system or other software.
This provides a clear picture of where an organization’s assets are at any one time to its leaders.
One type of asset tracking that does not necessitate a constant connection is a radio-frequency identification (RFID). When an RFID tag enters into the range of an RFID reader’s electromagnetic pulse, the tag’s radio receiver and transmitter are triggered.
While RFID asset tracking is effective in many situations, it is reliant on external hardware (RFID reader devices) to get the tags to transmit their location.
It’s useful for tracking a container during shipment, but there’s no way to track it down if it’s lost or stolen, and never comes close to another RFID reader device.
Many businesses are turning to real-time asset tracking solutions as cellular IoT devices and connectivity become more accessible and efficient.
Top 9 Best IoT Asset Tracking Solutions
Hundreds (if not thousands) of asset-tracking products, software, and services have sprung up alongside asset-tracking technology. For a variety of use cases, we’ve compiled a list of the 9 best IoT asset trackers currently available on the market.
Seeworld – Best Budget Asset Tracking Solution
Seeworld, a leading GPS tracker supplier in China, specializes in the R&D and manufacturing of GPS tracking hardware & software with customers in over 100 countries and regions around the world and is dedicated to bringing reliable GPS tracking products and customized GPS tracking solutions to our clients since 2008.
SEEWORLD has been deeply rooted in IoT hardware and software solutions based on location services for 13 years.
Their main hardware includes smart GPS trackers for vehicles, motorcycles, e-bikes, buses, trucks, e-scooters, assets and cargo, and more.
Seeworld’s asset tracking solution – WhatsGPS – offers the best way for you to have real-time information about the location and use of their vehicles and equipment assets.
You can get lifetime access for only $15, which is an excellent pick for companies with a tight budget who need the ability to track and monitor their assets in real-time.
In addition, Seeworld provides an array of IoT asset trackers for commercial use. Some of the best trackers that Seeworld provide includes Seeworld W15 portable wireless asset tracker and the R11 hardwired fleet tracker, which is a commercial vehicle tracker with fuel-cut off and monitoring.
Particle Tracking System
The Particle Tracking System allows for real-time asset tracking as well as data collection from temperature and acceleration sensors. The open firmware of the system allows users to add more IoT sensors and manage them all on the Particle IoT Platform.
In North America, the trackers employ Cat-M cellular technology, while in Europe, the Middle East, and Asia, they use LTE Cat-1 with 3G/2G fallback.
AT&T Fleet Complete
LTE-M connectivity, a low-power wide-area network technology, is widely used in AT&T Fleet Complete service. They provide high-quality mini GPS trackers capturing GPS data as well as other data such as humidity and temperature measurements, light exposure, and impact status.
The system is solar-powered and may be used to track assets in a variety of industries, including medical supplies, building materials, and machinery.
Azuga is a fleet tracking company that also sells sensors for tracking physical assets like small equipment and shipping containers. The connected sensors use GPS and cellular technologies and have rechargeable batteries that last up to 6 months per charge.
Azuga’s tracker also has geofencing, which allows you to construct an invisible line around your assets and receive notifications when a tagged object departs that region.
Keeptruckin’s asset trackers are designed for use in the shipping sector and function constantly either through a power connection to the trailer or charging using an integrated solar panel.
The sensors send GPS coordinates and other statistics to the server via cellular connectivity, which users can access using cloud-based applications. Keeptruckin supports geofencing and can send an alert if a vehicle leaves from the set boundaries.
EROAD provides full fleet management as well as asset tracking. Their tracker uses 4G connectivity and sends all collected data into a single dashboard, allowing users to manage cargo fleets while staying in compliance with regulations.
The EROAD tracker’s batteries may last up to six months, and it can also be powered by a 12- or 24-volt power source.
Omnitracs is a company that specializes in vehicle fleet tracking and provides a full spectrum of services, including fleet telematics, driver and vehicle performance monitoring, and trailer tracking.
Because of the company’s fleet management expertise, their tracking services give a wealth of useful information in addition to asset location, such as predictive maintenance, diagnostic data, and fuel data, even for distant assets.
Advanced Tracking Technologies Inc. (ATTI) allows customers to track both fixed and mobile assets, allowing for real-time GPS monitoring of a wide range of objects, including trailers, heavy equipment, boats, and automobiles.
ATTI’s tracking devices are compact and simple to install, and they run on 4 AAA batteries or a 5V external power line. The trackers have 1.5-year battery life and can save one year’s worth of historical data.
Asset Management Software (AMS)
AMS is a fleet management provider that offers GPS and asset tracking for both powered and non-powered assets. They offer a variety of trackers and employ multi-network roaming SIM cards to ensure cellular access, even when traveling internationally.
The majority of AMS’s trackers are powered by a running vehicle, however, a handful is powered by lithium and/or rechargeable batteries.
What Are the Benefits of Using an IoT Tracking System?
IoT asset tracking automation automates what would otherwise be time-consuming and error-prone manual procedures. An asset manager’s day may easily be taken up by only maintaining asset reservations and transaction recording.
IoT technology allows ordinary commercial equipment to be “location-aware.” It can communicate real-time information to other computer systems or human workers about its location and how it is being utilized.
As the cost of this technology decreases, SMBs will be able to use data-gathering capabilities that were previously only available to major corporations. Organizations of any size can benefit from IoT asset tracking since it allows them to collect useful business intelligence.
Asset Usage Optimization
Computer-assisted asset management gives you a lot more control over how you use and maintain your equipment. For example, to fairly disperse wear and tear, you can rotate equipment usage over a whole inventory. You can automatically lock down assets based on a maintenance plan to prevent them from being signed out.
You can track asset usage over time and create a total cost of ownership profiles for different pieces of equipment you store with detailed logging. This knowledge can help you make better purchase decisions in the future.
Tracking data, for example, may suggest that one brand of handheld scanner breaks twice as often as another. You can only replenish your inventory with the better-performing model the next fiscal year.
Using IoT-based tracking solutions, whole new corporate processes and workflows are feasible. You can designate maintenance lockers in your equipment storage systems, for example.
When a user reports a broken piece of equipment, the system can immediately notify technicians that it needs to be serviced. The user is subsequently prompted to place the asset in a specially designated locker to remove it from circulation.
What Communication Technologies Are Used by IoT Asset Trackers?
BLE is a viable solution for short-range applications where the asset in motion will remain within the range of devices that can receive its signals. BLE tags are affordable and have a battery life of up to ten years, making them ideal for tracking huge numbers of assets inside a tight grid of infrastructure.
ZigBee is a low-power wireless mesh network technology developed by ZigBee, which is sometimes used for asset tracking. The majority of ZigBee applications are smart home and building applications, which require a lot of bandwidth and communication.
ZigBee, on the other hand, is less expensive than extending a wireless network and can function on many frequencies, allowing you to use a frequency that isn’t in use. Because ZigBee can support up to 65,000 devices, it can be used as an asset tracking system.
It uses less power than Bluetooth, but the tradeoff is a limited range of only 40 feet; the high frequencies employed necessitate a line of sight. Devices and tags that are compatible with the ZigBee network protocol are also required.
Asset trackers benefit from low-power, wide-area network solutions like narrowband IoT (NB-IoT), LTE-M, Sigfox, and LoRa, which give long battery life and stable long-range connectivity.
The tags are more expensive than BLE tags, but they can operate without as much infrastructure (NB-IoT tags connect directly to the cellular network, rather than needing a gateway).
These technologies are not suited for continuous connectivity for real-time tracking because they are designed for occasional check-ins and cannot sustain tower hand-offs.
Other cellular technologies are viable asset tracking options, but they are typically more expensive and consume more power, making them a better fit for assets that require connectivity for other reasons (such as a connected machine that collects and sends data to the cloud) and/or can provide an external power source.
More and more fleet companies will use asset monitoring systems as IoT sensors and systems become more widely available and affordable.
Logging onto a cloud-based portal and getting a bird’s-eye view of your transportation fleet, machinery, or construction assets can help streamline your business procedures, resulting in increased efficiencies and cost savings.
What Is Asset Tracking in IoT?
IoT asset tracking leverages sensors and connected devices to enable remote monitoring and management of an asset’s position and movements. Every business has valuable assets, from manufacturing equipment to vehicle fleets or even livestock on a farm.
How IoT Is Used in Tracking Systems?
IoT works through various sensors and chips that send data to the cloud through a form of connectivity, such as Bluetooth, WiFi, cellular networks, LPWAN, RFID, and satellite. The data is then processed using software, and insights are then relayed to the end-user, through some kind of alert.
What Is Asset Management in IoT?
IoT-enabled asset management uses sensors. This empowers organizations to know their assets’ information, eliminating the need for human effort. It actively keeps track of all assets through IoT sensors attached to each asset. However, selecting the IoT sensor is also crucial.
What Devices Are IoT?
The IoT devices include wireless sensors, software, actuators, computer devices, and more. They are attached to a particular object that operates through the internet, enabling the transfer of data among objects or people automatically without human intervention.
What Is Oracle Asset Tracking?
Oracle® Asset Tracking is a comprehensive asset lifecycle tracking application that provides tracking, visibility, and control of globally dispersed assets for capital-intensive companies, along with complete transaction auditing.