GreenRoad, a driver performance management company, announced Oct. 22 a smartphone-based driver performance manager for fleets. The GreenRoad Smartphone Edition uses technology within the smartphone, including GPS and built-in accelerometers, to eliminate the need for a professionally installed telematics device in the vehicle.

The service uses patented algorithms to detect how well the driver is driving. Whenever a risky or fuel-inefficient maneuver occurs, GreenRoad Smartphone Edition gives the driver immediate audio and visual feedback directly from the smartphone.

The GreenRoad Smartphone Edition, code named “Asimov,” is available now in beta for Android devices with a 2013 launch planned for an iOS version to use on Apple products. GreenRoad Smartphone Edition for Android will be commercially available by the end of 2012, the company said.

Drivers use the service by downloading the Asimov app, dropping the smartphone into the vehicle mount and beginning their trip.

The Asimov app also includes a distracted driving prevention feature that can be configured to automatically disable physical use of the smartphone while the vehicle is moving.

(Photos courtesy of GreenRoad.)On the left is what the driver sees when no driving incidents have occured. On the right is what a driver would see after a driving "event."

(Photos courtesy of GreenRoad.)
On the left is what the driver sees when no driving incidents have occured. On the right is what a driver would see after a driving "event."

GreenRoad Smartphone Edition is expected to appeal to a broad market including business and delivery fleets with rapid vehicle turnover, short-term leases and rotating fleet equipment.

One of the first companies to use Asimov is Edko LLC, a U.S. vegetation management services provider. A group of Edko drivers began using Asimov on their smartphones in August with the goals of improving driver safety and fuel efficiency.

Above is a post-trip summary that shows the driver a full trip's data.

Above is a post-trip summary that shows the driver a full trip's data.

“As a fleet that has decided to bet on Android for our drivers, we are impressed with what GreenRoad is doing,” said Jason Sellers, district manager at Edko. “We are definitely interested in the Asimov application rather than another standalone device that requires professional installation in our fleet vehicles.”

Other features include:

  • Potential integration with other smartphone-based fleet applications, such as inventory management, navigation and fleet management.
  • GreenRoad’s algorithms automatically detect the beginning and end of each trip. The driver does not need to think about turning GreenRoad on or off because it runs in the background, measuring driving performance, as the driver drives.
  • Measures risky or inefficient driving “events” across five parameters: acceleration, braking, cornering, speeding and lane handling.
  • Real-time feedback to the drivers for complete transparency.
  • Dashboard customization for different positions or types of fleets.
  • Ability to create driver rankings, so that each driver can see where they stand within the fleet. GreenRoad said the safety score is calculated through the number of driving events for every 10 hours.
  • The app also looks at vehicle type when analyzing events.
  • Driving tips are offered while the app is in use.

Building the Smartphone Edition

The GreenRoad Smartphone Edition was developed by a team of software developers. “Our biggest challenge in creating Asimov was dealing with the phone’s variable orientation in space,” said VP of product management, Amir Shoval. “One of our key innovations was figuring out how to continuously calculate the phone’s orientation and automatically sync this with the precise event measurements generated from phone sensor data.”

GreenRoad has also partnered with several insurance companies to provide incentives to companies that have consistently safe drivers. According to the company, it has partnerships with The Hartford, Zurich and Marsh Insurance, which are applicable to regular GreenRoad in-vehicle software users as well.

Beta Program Availability

Fleet operators interested in participating in the GreenRoad Smartphone Edition beta program are encouraged to visit to contact a company representative, or call 1-888-658-4420.