With driver fatigue accounting for 1 in 5 serious crashes, tachographs play an important role in road safety, helping to enforce commercial driver and vehicle legislation. Fitted to a vehicle they record speed, distance, and driver activity. Commercial fleet operators need to quickly calibrate and program tachographs produced by different manufacturers, fitted to numerous types of vehicles. Optimo provided a new opportunity to combine sensor and diagnostic tools with data management. The device had to be easy to hold, small enough to transport between vehicle checks, simple to use and intelligent, using automatic tachograph detection.
UNIQUE PROPERTIES / PROJECT DESCRIPTION:
Optimo is a unique touch screen product for programming and calibrating all digital tachographs fitted to commercial vehicles. Focusing on speed and ease of use, Optimo combines wireless communication, product application data and a host of different sensor connections into a portable device for use in the vehicle cabin and workshop. Designed for optimal ergonomics and flexible positioning, its task driven interface and innovative hardware dramatically improves the user’s experience and takes tachograph programming into the future.
OPERATION / FLOW / INTERACTION:
The front of the product is deliberately simple but easy to hold due to the concave surround which is ‘thumb friendly’ and protects the glass. Optimo's capacitive touch screen provides clear navigation for the user. The easy grip protective band around the edge and the rear integrates connections, a camera for transferring images to Stoneridge technical support, and the battery pack which has been designed to act as an angled support when used on a table or bench. Optimo’s intelligence allows the user to automatically detect which tachograph is connected, copy data from one tachograph to another and easily carry out new tachograph installations with full colour application sheets available at the touch of a button.
PROJECT DURATION AND LOCATION:
The project started in September 2011. The product was launched in December 2012.
FITS BEST INTO CATEGORY:
Digital and Electronic Devices Design
PRODUCTION / REALIZATION TECHNOLOGY:
Optimo’s enclosure uses over-mouldings to provide the rubberised features, both around the edge for increased grip and on the rear surface for non-slip use on a table. The Stoneridge designed electronics uses a PC based platform for running Optimo’s custom designed GUI on an 8" capacitive touch screen. Multiple connectors for backwards and forward tachograph compatibility, and both mains and in-vehicle charging provide added flexibility for the workshop technician. A one hour quick charging time and a “Hot Swap” facility for Optimo’s battery pack means commercial fleet operators can easily manage and record drivers working hours and journeys without interruption.
SPECIFICATIONS / TECHNICAL PROPERTIES:
Width 240mm x Depth 60mm x Height 170mm
Tablet, Tachograph, Innovation, Robust, User Interface, Electronics
The project required immersive research in user environments which included truck maintenance workshops and cabs, to better understand the sequence of operations and practical problems of holding or positioning products whilst undertaking various test and calibration tasks. The next stage was to map the possible scenarios of use and identify the shortest interaction paths with minimal screen changes.
It was clear early in the product proposition stage that the ergonomics and robustness of the product, along with the user interface would be essential to Optimo’s success. A substantial electronics assembly required an enclosure design that was carefully profiled for optimum ergonomics whilst reducing the apparent depth of the product. By solving the practical challenges, such as the means to ‘hot swap’ and recharge custom designed battery packs, and improving operational efficiency, through the development of a simplified task driven interface, we were able to deliver a truly integrated solution.
TEAM MEMBERS (4) :
Pete Holdcroft, Les Stokes, Matthew Brown and Corrie Crooks
L A Design, 2012.