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Reliance Jio has a new IoT product coming up: ‘Jio Car Connect’, an On-Board Diagnostic (OBD) device that can be plugged into a car’s OBD module to record and track engine and other vehicular related data, as indicated by a Team-bhp report.

MediaNama has written to Jio asking what kind of vehicular data will the Jio Connect service record, who will have access to such data, and where the data will be stored: locally on a user’s mobile device, or on an online database. We also asked them when the service is scheduled to be launched and pricing details. We are yet to hear from Jio.

Once plugged in, the device records data from the vehicle’s sensors and displays it on a mobile app, according to a thread posted on Team-bhp. This data is mainly used for diagnosing issues within a vehicle’s system, since the OBD device records vehicle information, acceleration (Rate Per Minute), throttling/revving, instances of braking, fuel/battery efficiency, trip duration, among others.

Jio’s OBD device is still on a testing phase and will also beam WiFi inside a car, since the device apparently runs on a Jio SIM card, the report added. This will provide each vehicle with a virtual identity via an IP address, and allows interconnection with other connected cars. The device can also be used to record traffic details and share alerts in real-time in case the car gets into an accident.

Vehicular data collection: What’s more interesting is the fact that this device records vehicular data, and can be generated on-demand. For example, a historical data of the car denoting its working condition and efficiency can be shared with a potential buyer; this data can also be shared with RTO or an insurance company. This was pointed out by a Team-bhp reader in a discussion thread.

Other players in telematics space

Honda and Mahindra: Interestingly automobile manufacturing companies like Honda and Mahindra had earlier unveiled their own ‘Connected Cars’ platform for vehicle location tracking, engine health monitoring, and trip details. However, these devices will work only with the manufacturer’s own vehicles. I spoke to Honda during their IoT platform launch regarding data collection and who could have access to these. A spokesperson said that such data will be accessible to a user only, and can be generated and shared with others on demand if he/she wishes to. More on this here.

Trak N Tell GPS device: Gurgaon-based Trak N Tell 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. It raised an undisclosed amount of funding in July.

MapmyIndia car tracking device: Earlier in May, MapmyIndia had launched a plug and play device called DriveMate that connects to cars via the OBD port and provides location, ignition and status reports, alerts of the vehicle via Android, iOS and Windows Phone apps.