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A Guide to the Tech Behind Logistics App Development

ionorah14 profile image Laura O. Tolentino ・3 min read

Apps are now used by businesses of all shapes and sizes. There are very few business environments in which there is not a potential use for an app-based approach. Whether its point of sale software, tech support software or even barcode scanning software, there are now apps being used to replace a whole host of other devices.

Logistics apps are one of the newer additions to this ever-expanding field. The transportation industry is a huge potential market and has collectively been moving towards both mobile and online services. These are all powered by dedicated apps, which have to be put together by experienced designers.
Below are some of the key components of any logistics app. If you want to ultimately design your own, these are the areas that you need to study first.

Location Tracking

One of the most common features of logistics apps is location tracking. This enables the operator to see the exact GPS location of their entire fleet at any given moment. This isn't just a useful tip for seeing the positions of vehicles, location tracking is also used to determine how quickly they are proceeding along their route and, therefore, what their predicted time of arrival is.

There are two types of location tracking: passive and active. Passive tracking used to be the most common. It required the tracking device to be physically plugged in in order for the data to be retrieved. Active tracking has since taken over, where data is constantly being sent from the device. The app-based approach would fall into the latter category.

Traffic Information and Route Optimization

Route optimization is notoriously difficult to get right. However, it is an increasingly important feature for logistics apps to include. For any logistics business, time is money. That means that an app that isn't capable of finding the fastest and most efficient route is going to be of little use.

There are several sources that app developers can use for traffic information. Incorporating real-time traffic information into your route optimization is a must in the current marketplace. If you don't offer this feature, you can be sure that your competitors will.

Businesses like Trimble Transportation, who produce logistics software for the transportation industry, need to be able to take into account the dynamic nature of traffic in order to be more useful than glorified map readers. Fortunately, Trimble offers all the features you could possibly want from logistics software.

Data Scraping

A growing number of apps are able to compare the prices of gas at variable fuel stations, and even the prices at various service stations and truck stops. This requires data scraping to gather data on the fly.

Data scraping is used throughout logistic software. Essentially, whenever data is needed that isn't readily available from the vehicle itself, it is likely to be scraped.

Logistics app development has exploded in recent years. This is largely thanks to the rapid modernization of the transport industry across the developed world. Learning about logistics app development will introduce you to numerous concepts that will be useful in other areas as well. The subjects above are excellent starting points.

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