Volvo Trucks Adds Update Notification

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Wireless Machine-Information Systems

Display panel from Volvo Trucks

Volvo Trucks has added a driver display activation feature to its remote programming service that alerts the driver when parameters or software updates are available. An icon flashes on the instrument cluster screen, and the driver can activate the update via the cluster at their next planned stop.

“With the introduction of Volvo Trucks’ new Driver Display Activation, the process time for software and parameter updates has been improved by an average of 50 percent,” said Ash Makki, product marketing manager, in a prepared statement. “Now, from customer initiation to completion, an update can be done in less time than a driver typically takes for a break or fill up.”

Drivers will no longer need to schedule an appointment to complete uploads, but can completely upgrade the software and parameters on their own, from anywhere, without the need for personal assistance from a Volvo technician, according to Volvo.

Volvo will still offer agent assistance through its uptime center in Greensboro, North Carolina, who will follow the success of each update.

“There’s a direct connection between keeping a truck updated with the latest software and reducing fault codes, in addition to the truck running more efficiently, improving the environmental footprint and reducing operational costs,” said Conal Deedy, director of commercial telematics solutions, in a statement. “There’s a lot of value in each update and the convenience of Driver Display Activation will allow these updates to be done with minimal disruption to operations.”

The activation also allows drivers and fleets to change parameters on the truck to alter the vehicle’s performance. Parameters such as maximum road speed, cruise speed limit, shift patterns, and idle shutdown time can be customized for various applications. This ensures the truck is optimally configured for the environment in which it is operating, according to Volvo.

For instance, a driver or fleet owner with trucks that regularly travel into Ontario, Canada, might want to reconfigure speed settings when leaving the U.S., and reset those parameters when the truck crosses back over the border. Another kit might make adjustments to gear shifting if a tanker load is changed from dry goods to liquids, to compensate for the different shifting characteristics due to the loads. Driver display activation allows these changes to be made in minutes, remotely, at any time of day. And for fleets, all trucks can now be batch-updated at one time using the driver display activation without having to contact the Volvo Trucks’ Uptime Center for each and every truck in the fleet affected by the update.

The system will use a factory-installed telematics gateway, leveraging existing Volvo Trucks technology. No extra hardware is required. Every new Volvo-powered truck will have driver display activation available free of charge for the first two years, bundled with Volvo Trucks’ remote diagnostics services.

Source: Volvo Trucks