Wherever courier goods or freight goes around the world, on lorries, on boats or by plane, it is increasingly being monitored by the Internet of Things. While that phrase may conjure up all sorts of images, the underlying reason for its existence is to allow “things” to talk to computers, and then report back to people.
Therefore, a freighter shipping goods from China can be rerouted around bad weather, or follow a fast current found by another boat to save fuel. A refrigerated goods lorry on the roads of Europe with a faulty chiller can be directed to a repair facility to save the cargo spoiling. Similarly, a van full of valuable or sensitive goods can be fitted with load and shock sensors to ensure they are transported smoothly and safely.
All of this means better customer service for the sellers and buyers, with less waste and damage. It also means companies can keep a better eye on their fleets and learn over time the most efficient ways to move goods around. In the not too distant future, the effects and power of this technology might also see it take charge on the bridge or in the cab, with robotic drivers or pilots. It might even go as far as miniature drones or robots leaving a mothership vehicle at the other end of a route to deliver individual parcels or items. That’s if the likes of Amazon and Starship Drones have their way.
To maximise revenue and save the most on fuel and maintenance costs, the transport and freight industries have always been on the cutting edge of technology, and this represents the latest step. If it saves customers’ money and provides a more efficient service, then expect more revolution in freight and courier services, even as the roads remain the same and struggle to cope with growing volumes of traffic.