IoT startup Trak N Tell owned by Bits N Bytes Soft Private Limited has raised an undisclosed amount of funding from a cluster investors including the likes of Brian Acton, Co-Founder, WhatsApp. The company will use the fresh towards product development and business expansion and hiring talent in verticals including R&D, operations and marketing.
The Gurgaon-based company currently provides a GPS-based product that enables car owners and fleet owners to track their vehicles using their smartphones. The company claims that, the vehicle can be turned off or immobilized to prevent theft. For this, it uses Machine-to-Machine (M2M) and IoT capabilities and integrate a vehicle’s performance/trip data into a smartphone app. The app can predict engine failure, notify car owners on preventive maintenance, provides a system for fuel monitoring, over speeding alerts, among others.
Apart from this, sensors fitted in cars will provide data about the location and usage patterns of the vehicle, while all such data is relayed back into a cloud infrastructure, and displayed to users in real-time. The company claims that currently its ‘Connected Cars’ product has been fitted in over 6000 cars, and even claims to have prevented at least 61 instances of car theft.
“We will be launching a superior safety solution for individual car and bike owners as compared to the present devices available in the market. Our aim is to offer an Indian version of connected cars that are available in Europe and North America. While the quality is in parity with international standards, our prices will be set in accordance to the Indian market,” Mr. Pranshu Gupta, CEO, Trak N Tell said in a statement.
MapmyIndia car tracking device: Earlier in May, MapmyIndia had launched a plug and play device called DriveMate that connects to cars via the OBD (on-board diagnostics) port and provides location, ignition and status reports, alerts of the vehicle via Android, iOS and Windows Phone apps. At the time of launch, the company has not revealed the cost of the device, rather redirects users to directly get in touch if interested to buy one. The device comes with a SIM card although it requires a separate SMS package top up.
Competition: Interestingly automobile manufacturing companies like Honda and Mahindra had earlier unveiled their own ‘Connected Cars’ platform for vehicle tracking, engine health monitoring, and trip details. However, these devices will work only with the manufacturer’s vehicles; and startups like Trak N Tell might pressurize automobile manufacturers to open up their platform to other buyers as well.