BlackBerry, Trimble partner to offer ‘unparalleled visibility’ in transportation management

If you still thought Blackberry (NYSE: BB) was a smartphone for nerds who want a superior typing tool, where have you been? Not only does the company no longer produce its own smartphones, but for several years now it has forged a path in the trucking industry when it comes to cybersecurity and a variety of other software solutions.

That really should come as no surprise, as the company has decades of experience in secure mobile communications. As FreightWaves has reported before, the BlackBerry Radar is more than just another track-and-trace technology. It offers an asset-monitoring solution for trailers, chassis and containers that provides information data around utilization, location, motion, mileage, door open/close status, and cargo capacity utilization through an intuitive online dashboard. Data is transmitted and stored securely on a cloud platform designed to maintain the privacy of user information, and the device simply attaches to the inside of trailer doors.

Thus, BlackBerry’s announcement Tuesday that BlackBerry Radar now integrates with Trimble’s (NASDAQ: TRMB) TMW.Suite and TruckMate transportation management system (TMS) is all the more interesting. The new offering is available for commercial carriers, dedicated fleets, private fleets, brokers and 3PLs using TMW.Suite or TruckMate software.

Trimble is a major electronic logging device (ELD) supplier. While mergers and acquisitions have been a key component to their growth strategy, so have partnerships and integration. Certainly maintaining and managing technologies from disparate sources poses challenges, such as the PeopleNet outage at the top of the new year (PeopleNet is a Trimble company), but overall the strategy has proved effective. By some estimates, acquisitions represent a full third of the company’s overall revenue.

Trimble’s offerings continue to grow, as with the acquisition of shipper-focused Kuebix, announced in January. Part of that strategy now gives Trimble even more insight into the movement of freight from end to end, and the opportunity to do more with that data.

TMW.Suite and TruckMate provide visibility into order-entry, load-booking, dispatch and driver settlement, detention and service failures, as well as many other processes so that business owners can manage their fleets based on data-driven intelligence. Through the BlackBerry Radar integration, fleet owners will be able to receive data on their trailers, chassis or containers’ location, route, door status and cargo load state integrated within the TMW.Suite or TruckMate TMS software.

“The integration of our TMW.Suite and TruckMate solutions with BlackBerry Radar provides a seamless experience for drivers, dispatchers and fleet managers alike,” said Jay Delaney, senior director of product management for Trimble Transportation. “With BlackBerry Radar, fleet managers can achieve unparalleled visibility into their cargo assets from a single dashboard that they can use to unlock excess shipping capacity and improve profitability.”

“BlackBerry Radar offers fleet operators unique benefits to help them manage their operations more effectively, reduce costs and offer customers more value,” said Christopher Plaat, senior vice president and general manager of BlackBerry Radar. “We’re thrilled to extend these benefits to Trimble’s TMS customers. Accessing the critical information and insights that BlackBerry Radar is able to provide, from right inside Trimble’s solutions, will no doubt lead to significant technological efficiencies for the countless employees at freight brokerages, 3PLs, shippers and fleets who rely on these systems for their day-to-day operations.”