DETROIT--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Sprint’s advanced machine-to-machine (M2M) technology, powered by its 3G and 4G networks, is driving a transformation in the Transportation and Logistic arenas that create significant environmental, safety, efficiency and operational benefits, Sprint (NYSE: S) CEO Dan Hesse noted today in his keynote address to the Detroit Economic Club.
During his remarks, Hesse unveiled the company’s M2M Connected Transportation initiative and shared examples of how Sprint is working with innovative and industry-leading partners to pioneer M2M solutions to solve complex challenges by reducing environmental impacts, increasing public safety, supporting the energy/smart grid and reducing distracted driving.
“At Sprint, our vision goes beyond connecting millions of cars. We want to provide ‘Connected Transportation’ to trucks, buses, subways, taxis, planes, police cars and ambulances so that they can be instantly linked through voice, data and images,” said Hesse. “These capabilities can turn a vehicle into a multi-dimensional communications center to improve driver performance, help reduce accidents, provide significant safety benefits, enhance fleet management logistics for businesses and have a potentially profound impact on environmental sustainability.”
Connected Transportation helps companies better manage logistics to optimize, schedule, monitor and track deliveries, personnel and vehicles. This enables drivers to waste less fuel looking for delivery destinations, gas stations and other locales, while reducing emissions and carbon footprints, decreasing costs and creating enhanced personnel comfort and organizational efficiencies. At the same time, Connected Transportation technology is helping first-time and professional drivers learn safer driving habits. In describing Sprint’s innovative role in this rapidly expanding market, Hesse made note of three new significant partnerships using Sprint’s networks and M2M technology:
Safety, Productivity and Convenience for Hyundai
Aeris® Communications, a Sprint strategic partner, will leverage Sprint’s national network to provide cellular connectivity to Hyundai Motor America’s Blue Link® connected vehicle program launching in 2011.
Hyundai worked closely with ATX, the telematics service provider, and Aeris to build Blue Link, a market-leading connected vehicle program that seamlessly incorporates safety and security, entertainment, productivity and convenience features. Through its close relationship with Sprint, Aeris provides ATX and Hyundai access into a cellular infrastructure that is unmatched by other carriers, allowing ATX and Hyundai to design and implement higher-performing features and functionality.
Hyundai’s Blue Link system provides for Automated Crash Notification, SOS Assistance, Stolen Vehicle Recovery and a host of other features. Some could help navigate everyday life and others may actually help save lives.
Reduced Emissions and Fuel Costs Plus Driver Productivity and Comfort
PACCAR, parent company of Peterbilt and Kenworth Class 5-8 commercial vehicles, is working with Sprint to introduce a new integrated mobile computing, telematics, navigation and business system, branded as SmartNav for Peterbilt and NavPlus for Kenworth.
This innovative solution from PACCAR and Sprint provides diagnostics/logistics, back-office, GPS/location-based services and other functionality to truck operators, who can achieve enhanced communications with dispatchers, logistics providers and shippers, while improving driver productivity and comfort on the road.
“Sprint is a technology leader and we look forward to offering its outstanding mobile connectivity service as a benefit to customers in Kenworth trucks factory-equipped with Kenworth NavPlus,” said Bill Kozek, Kenworth general manager and PACCAR vice president.
“Peterbilt’s SmartNav is designed to provide truck operators telematics, diagnostics, back-office and infotainment functionality to improve productivity and comfort on the road,” said Bill Jackson, Peterbilt general manager and PACCAR vice president. “By partnering with Sprint, a leader in innovative technology, we will be able to offer Peterbilt customers an outstanding mobile connectivity service.”
Monitoring, Electronic Payments and Digital Information for EV Charging Stations
Sprint is also working with ECOtality, a recognized leader in advanced transportation, energy systems and alternative fuels, to provide comprehensive wireless connectivity to more than 15,000 residential and commercial electric vehicle (EV) charging stations throughout ECOtality’s nationwide Blink™ Network.
ECOtality has begun installing the first of nearly 15,000 Level 2 EV charging stations along with more than 300 DC Fast Chargers at public and commercial sites throughout 2011.
For ECOtality’s commercial charging stations, Sprint’s expansive data network and technology will also help to process a variety of electronic payments, and even deliver digital content for advertising and information.
“We are pleased to continue to partner with leading, innovative companies like Sprint. With Sprint’s M2M technology, our Blink EV charging stations are provided with the reliable wireless connectivity necessary to conduct a variety of business services – from monitoring and electronic payments, to advanced capabilities via the Blink Network, stated Jonathan Read, CEO of ECOtality. “EV drivers will be able to depend on our chargers for smart operation, intuitive features, and reliable connectivity.”
Enhanced Public Safety through Connected Emergency Vehicles
Supported by Sprint 3G and 4G networks, police cars in San Jose, CA and ambulances across the United States are using technology from Feeney Wireless to create increased access and GPS/location-based connections to facilities, databases, dispatchers and fellow staff members for enhanced public safety, communications and reporting capabilities.
Feeney Wireless, which helps companies and public agencies develop M2M and mobile operations, provides connected transportation solutions which give personnel the ability to retrieve fingerprint and photo files, reports/records, remote information filing/retrieval and other services from the field when time is of the essence.
Improved Driver Training
DriveCam, a proven expert in the science of safe and efficient driving, has developed a device which turns on a camera when g-forces indicate a driver is driving dangerously. The camera records the dangerous action and notifies the parents or fleet manager. American Family Insurance offers the DriveCam program at no charge to all of its families with insured teen drivers.
Expanded Passenger Connectivity and Infotainment in the Air and on the Rails
Continental Airlines and Amtrak are already working with Sprint to install Wi-Fi, digital signage and other applications to enhance their passengers’ experience. By providing customers with enhanced access and infotainment, Amtrak and Continental improve customers’ experience and satisfaction while they are on the go.
In addition to these examples cited in Hesse’s remarks, Sprint and its many partners are developing a growing variety of other emerging solutions which require Sprint’s advanced wireless network to help support environmental sustainability, foster advances in safety and strengthen competitive advantages for Sprint business customers. Leading the way thorough innovation, Sprint helps partners turn their ideas into real solutions through the Sprint M2M Collaboration Center and the Sprint Command Center.
Sprint is the No. 1 wireless provider of GPS solutions, which have assisted companies with transportation and logistics needs for many years.* Sprint offers nearly twice the coverage of AT&T’s current 3G network (based on square miles).** Sprint 4G is currently available in 71 markets across the country, including Atlanta, San Francisco, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles and New York City. Sprint first launched 4G in Baltimore in September 2008 and continues to build its 4G service for consumers and business users across the country. For more information, visit www.sprint.com/4G.
*GPS claim based on number of available GPS solutions that carriers
offer and independent data.
**Coverage comparison based on publicly available information as of October 1, 2010 inclusive of Sprint roaming partners.
About Sprint Emerging Solutions Group
The Sprint Emerging Solutions Group (ESG) is an industry leader in M2M and embedded solutions. ESG delivers a full complement of assets critical to successful M2M and embedded solutions deployments. These include: network agnostic capabilities (including 3G, 4G, CDMA, and a reliable Tier 1 IP network); specialized industry solutions engineering teams; an open approach to devices and applications through the company’s Open Device Initiative, an expansive M2M partner ecosystem; and the ability to provide customers with customized solutions that can include distribution, branding, billing and customer care services. To learn more, view this special “What if …” M2M video and visit www.sprint.com/m2m.
About Sprint Nextel
Sprint Nextel offers a comprehensive range of wireless and wireline communications services bringing the freedom of mobility to consumers, businesses and government users. Sprint Nextel served more than 48.8 million customers at the end of the third quarter of 2010 and is widely recognized for developing, engineering and deploying innovative technologies, including the first wireless 4G service from a national carrier in the United States; offering industry-leading mobile data services, leading prepaid brands including Virgin Mobile USA, Boost Mobile, Common Cents Mobile and Assurance Wireless; instant national and international push-to-talk capabilities; and a global Tier 1 Internet backbone. Newsweek ranked Sprint No. 6 in its 2010 Green Rankings, listing it as one of the nation’s greenest companies, the highest of any telecommunications company. You can learn more and visit Sprint at www.sprint.com or www.facebook.com/sprint and www.twitter.com/sprint.