Don’t Be A Muppet, Get Cloud Connected Cameras For Your Fleet
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Don’t Be A Muppet, Get Cloud Connected Cameras For Your Fleet

Don't be a muppet, get cloud-connected cameras for your fleet

Hopefully you're reading this while thinking about which vehicle camera systems to install in your commercial fleet vehicles. If so, this article could save you a lot of money and heartache!

There are lots of important things to consider when buying vehicle cameras. The quality of the cameras, number and placement of the cameras on the vehicle, the type of DVR (i.e. SD Card or Hard Disk). But one decision trumps them all:

DOES YOUR VEHICLE CAMERA SYSTEM SUPPORT REMOTE ACCESS AND IF SO HOW?

The wrong choice can leave you feeling like a bit of a muppet and could mean the difference between winning and losing a claim.

Imagine any of these scenarios...

  • One of your vehicles is involved in a serious incident. The police is on scene and have decided to impound all the vehicles involved. You have cameras installed and it is imperative that you get hold of the footage ASAP as your driver swears the other person was at fault. Without a connected system, you are out of luck and have to hope you can get access to the vehicle, or bring it back to base at some point, to download the footage.
  • A vehicle is stopped when it should be moving. It would be great to have 'eyes' on the scene.

These are just two of a number of scenarios where a Cloud-Connected Solution can save your bacon. If you’d like to see the many other reasons have a read of our article: 6 Reasons To Buy Connected Vehicle Camera Systems.

This article will look specifically at your options and how they help in the two specific scenarios above.

Non-Connected Systems

Typically, this will be a single dashcam type system, but we have seen multi-camera systems wired into ‘dumb’ DVRs. These systems are completely standalone, and as such the only way to gain access to the footage is to physically remove the media (SD Cards or Hard Disk) and plug it ion to your PC. You then need to use special software to find the section of video you want and then export it. Can anyone say HASSLE???

But because it’s not a connected system, when it comes to the two scenarios above, you are out of luck and must hope you can get access to the vehicle, or bring it back to base at some point, to download the footage. If it’s impounded, good luck with that. If it’s stopped somewhere it’s not meant to be, you won’t know what happened until the vehicle comes back, if it ever does. Even then, most thieves will simply rip out any cameras, so you’ll never get the footage.

Basic Connected Systems

If you thought buying vehicle cameras/CCTV was going to be easy, think again! One of the red herrings in our industry is companies selling ‘connected systems’ which are OK for 1 to 3 vehicles in a business, but not at all fit for purpose in a proper fleet environment.

These systems are indeed remote accessible. In other words, you can connect to them and remotely download the footage, but they are not connected to a cloud-based system, and that introduces one major flaw…

You need to login and logout to each system individually. That’s OK if you have a couple of vehicles in your fleet. But 5 to 10 and it becomes troublesome. Anything over 10 to 15 and it becomes completely unmanageable. Worse still there are ‘multi-camera’ systems that have no central DVR. In these systems you have to login to each camera individually!

So, while you are faffing, trying to find which vehicle or camera to connect to, the device could be turned off, (read up about delayed switch off and continuous recording, which ProVision cameras support). Now you’re back to a non-connected system because you can’t access the camera, as it has no power!

Granted, these systems are at the low-end of the price scale. But it is precisely this cost differential added with confusing and misleading promotional messaging, that induces some fleet managers to make a bad, and sometimes critical, decision.

Cloud-Connected Systems

ProVision Vehicle Camera systems are fully cloud-connected. So what’s the difference?

  • Proper Fleet Management Platform
    A fully cloud-connected system provides a system to log into. That means you have a single login that then shows you all the vehicles that have the hardware installed in. Simplifying your management significantly.
  • Simple Video Viewing
    If you want to view or download video, the system shows you the key events that have occurred, such as braking, speeding, etc. You can either select one of these events or view by time.
  • Combined Camera Views
    All the cameras attached to a vehicle are shown in a single view. So you can download the footage required to show the precise circumstances of an incident even if it covers multiple camera angles.
  • Instant Video
    Perhaps the most important aspect of a cloud-connected camera system is that when an ‘event’ is triggered, the system automatically pulls a short 15 second snippet of the video into the cloud platform. The fleet manager can watch that video without having to connect to the remote hardware directly. If more of the footage is desired, they can then connect to the hardware and pull it down.
  • Delayed Switch-Off/Continuous Recording
    A ‘made-for-commercial’ system provides the ability to continue working after vehicle power is turned off. This allows the system to continue recording, but more importantly it can be accessed remotely to download video. The interval can be set from an hour to 24 hours per day.
  • Hardware Status
    A cloud-connected platform also shows the status of hardware in your vehicles, as well as the vehicle status itself. So, you will immediately know when a vehicle has stopped, is parked idle or parked off. Allowing you to act to view or download video.

As you might have guessed already, ProVision provides systems that are fully cloud-connected and deliver all the key features a fleet manager/owner needs to enjoy maximum protection for their fleet.

Here is a demo video showing our cloud platform. As well as the remote video usage, this video also shows how our system can be used for vehicle tracking.

 

So, don't be a puppet to sales people selling inferior camera systems...

Choose a ProVision Vehicle Camera System and Connected Plan, or Contact Us to find out more.