The truck industry is no exception as truckers (drivers) now use the internet to communicate with their fellow truck drivers, customers, family, and friends. Earlier on, the situation was different as they had to rely on unreliable radios and payphones to communicate. Although these methods helped them pass their messages to the right entities, it was often very inconvenient and unsuccessful.
Currently, wireless internet and satellite internet have changed the way drivers communicate. As long as they have their smartphones, they can readily connect with the companies they work in, send essential documents, hold virtual meetings, and develop friendships, and many more. In fact, the internet has been a good source of entertainment for most truck drivers. Besides this, they can receive updates on traffic and weather conditions. This has made the internet an indispensable tool for truckers and semi-truck drivers.
Benefits of Using Internet for Truckers
As mentioned above, the internet has become an important tool for truckers in several ways. Some of these ways include:
1. Enables internet and truckers can connect their families
Truckers are also social beings. Therefore, they need to keep on checking on how their families are doing back at home. After all, some of them are usually on the road for many hours and can stay away from their families for many days before returning.
In some cases, truck drivers are only able to meet their families once a fortnight and so on. All this depends on their work schedule and so on. However, with a good internet connection, they can contact those they love using social media platforms such as Facebook, WhatsApp, Twitter, and Instagram.
2. Helps to connect with their fellow truckers by the use of the internet
Besides their loved ones, truckers also need to keep in touch with their fellow truckers. Since these people might not be in the same location at the same time, they need something that will keep them connected despite the distance between them.
The good news is that the internet helps truck drivers to network with their peers through chat rooms and social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter. Here, they can share insights and share ideas from any location.
3. Improved accountability
For many years, truckers have been struggling with accountability issues. In fact, most of them hardly managed their expenses the right way. This made them get into debt, and so on. Fortunately, they can nowadays manage their expenses and personal finances via their laptop, thanks to the internet. As long as they can access their laptop and have a good internet connection, they are good to go.
4. Efficient reporting
Nowadays, truckers can now send safety and compliance reports to their seniors from time to time. Earlier on, this was just but a dream. However, with the emergence of modern technology, it is easy to send these reports using emails and other platforms.
5. Improved navigation
Sometimes, if you are new to a certain route, chances of getting lost are very high. To avert this, truck drivers can now Wi-Fi hotspots to check route information and even know certain destinations thanks to Google Maps and other navigation apps. As long as you have these apps on your phone, you will be good to go.
As the adage goes, ‘all work without play makes Jack a dull boy’, truckers also need to be entertained. Once they have driven for several kilometers, they normally rest and have fun for several hours before eventually sleeping. With a good internet connection, these truckers can now play games online, watch videos, and stream songs online. All these activities go a long way in keeping boredom at bay.
7. Easy tracking of trucks
Trucking companies have to keep their fleet of trucks checks all the time. Here, tracking companies can tell the location a certain truck is at a particular time. If anything happens, the trucking company will know this information in real-time. This greatly helps in fleet management and prevents down.
Way To Get Internet Access For Truckers And Semi-Trucks
When it comes to internet access for truckers, there is a myriad of options they can consider. The good news is that these options will keep them connected to the internet for longer periods. Some of the ways truck drivers can access the internet include:
1. Wi-Fi Enabled Truck Stops
As we speak, most truck stops are now equipped with wireless internet regardless of whether they are located in a high-traffic area or not. Here, you can trust that you will enjoy a good internet connection even if you are located in a remote area. All this has been made possible by satellite internet connection and DSL. Also, the 3G and 4g technologies have made this a success.
Therefore truck drivers can now access the internet virtually from any point. This, in turn, helps maintain constant communication with the truck companies. In fact, truckers can submit the necessary documents to their company in good time. Also, they can communicate with the shipping and receiving companies. Better still, this internet connection has made it easy for them to file other vital documents when traveling.
2. Wi-Fi Enabled Mobile Devices
Besides using Wi-Fi-enabled truck stops, drivers can now access the internet using their mobile device carrier while they are traveling. In fact, some companies will now supply you with a 3G mobile device. Better still, you can choose to remain connected to the internet through your personal device.
If a truck has more than one driver, a MiFi router can be used to ensure that both drivers remain connected during the trip. However, they have to pay a certain fee to their preferred mobile phone carrier. This fee charged depends on the carrier you choose for internet services.
3. Direct Satellite
Some truck companies have a direct link to a high-speed broadband connection. Here, truck drivers can readily utilize this wireless internet connection as it is normally funded by the truck companies that have employed the truck drivers. All the truck driver needs is a link, and he will be good to go.
First, the truck company has to establish a strategic partnership with the satellite internet provider of their choice. This, in turn, allows truck drivers to have direct access to the internet connection as they transport different goods out there. With satellite internet, you can be sure that you will remain connected even if you are in a remote area. This has actually made satellite internet more popular nowadays.
4. Public Wi-Fi
Sometimes, the truck driver might be in an area where he or she can access public Wi-Fi connection. Some of the places that have public Wi-Fi connections include hotels, local coffee shops, and so on.
Any truck driver can readily use this internet to communicate with his or her fellow truckers or maybe submit reports to the trucking company. Other times, he might choose to use this internet to reach out to his loved ones on Facebook and WhatsApp.
5. Portable modem or hotspot
If the truck driver has a mobile hotspot, he or she will be able to access the internet from any point. The good news is that a mobile hotspot or modem allows you to remain connected to the internet all the time.
Depending on your carrier, you might enjoy wide coverage as far as the network is concerned. However, this comes at a cost. A mobile hotspot can enable you to connect multiple devices to the internet. From your laptop to your tablet, there are many devices that you can connect to the internet.
6. Portable ZTE Velocity Wi-Fi Hotspot with 4G LTE Nationwide Data
The above-mentioned Wi-Fi hotspot can enable you to access the internet as you drive the truck. Since it is 4G enabled, you can be sure that you will enjoy a fast internet connection. Also, since the device is portable, you will be able to access the internet from any location. This makes it ideal compared to other ways of accessing the internet as you drive the truck. As a result, you will be able to keep in touch with your fellow truckers and get updates in real-time.
7. 4G LTE Modem with 4G LTE Nationwide Data
This modem can help you remain connected to the internet for longer sessions. All you need to do is to connect it to your laptop, and you will be good to go. Here, you will enjoy a fast internet connection and thereby get regular updates from your truck company.
Also, you can readily connect with those you love on social media, thanks to Facebook, WhatsApp, and Twitter. As long as you have data, you will enjoy browsing the internet from any location as you drive the truck.
How The Internet Changed the Trucking Industry
As technology has continued to evolve in the trucking sector, it is now important for trucking companies to embrace the same so that they can remain relevant. Nowadays, truckers need to be connected to the internet for efficiency purposes as far as cargo transportation is concerned. Here are a number of ways wireless internet has changed truck driving:
1. Improved Fleet management
Nowadays, truck companies can be able to locate their various truck using GPS technology. In fact, this technology has made it easy for these companies to track and plan deliveries and routes seamlessly.
Besides this, truck companies can now keep an eye on the weather and any other roadside condition that might affect their drivers in one way or another. Generally, wireless internet has improved the way truck companies manage their fleet of trucks out there.
2. Truck drivers can now get regular updates
Unlike before where drivers hardly got updates while on the road, nowadays they can readily get these updates in real-time. Be it from their fellow truckers or their trucking companies, they are able to receive compliance updates, roadside inspection updates, and so on. In fact, communication with drivers has become simpler than ever.
3. Improved social networking
Since drivers are social beings, they need to remain in touch with other drivers as they drive. Through social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and WhatsApp, these professionals are able to share insights on how to find the best routes and adhere to delivery schedules.
This way, these truck drivers can work as a team despite being alone in remote places. In addition, they can stay in touch with their families at home, thanks to the above-mentioned social media platforms.
4. Recruiting and staffing
Currently, online job transport job boards can be accessed on your phone or tablet. This accessibility has actually disrupted the trucking job market since drivers and owner-operators can log on to job boards and apply directly to open roles from the comfort of their truck’s cab. Fortunately, these log-on job boards are usually updated in real-time.
Also, wireless internet has helped to recruit and staffing agencies source positions with a lot of ease as these positions can be filled virtually. Since potential candidates are now connected to their employers, the process of recruitment and staffing has become faster and more seamless. In fact, this has reduced paperwork which actually delays the entire recruitment and selection process.
Things to Consider For Truckers When Using Wireless Internet
It is true to say that wireless internet has actually transformed the trucking industry in a big way. In fact, wireless internet has become part and parcel of modern-day truck operations. As you purpose to use wireless internet for efficient and dependable communication, there are many considerations that you should make. They include:
1. Be cautious when using unsecured wireless connections
Although using public Wi-Fi connection might seem to be a good idea, you should be careful as your vital information might be hacked without your knowledge. In fact, you should try as much as possible to use this kind of network when conducting vital operations such as banking and so on. Sometimes, it is important that you consider using a private network to prevent instances where your bank account information leaks and so on.
2. Try to verify it is a legitimate wireless connection
You will note that some bogus links might be set up by malicious users with the aim of scamming unsuspecting users. This kind of connection might resemble that of a coffee shop or a hotel. Therefore, it is important that you talk to an employee at the location that provides public Wi-Fi connection and asks for information that shows they are legitimate. Vital information such as the connection’s name and IP address shows that a certain wireless connection is genuine.
3. Do not share vital information about the truck company
As you use the wireless connection, you might get prompts requesting you to give information regarding your truck’s company. Such requests should be treated with the contempt they deserve. By sharing sensitive and confidential company information, you will be putting your employer at risk.
4. Satellite internet might be slower than other options
Although satellite internet might seem like a lucrative option for most people, it might be slow compared to other options. This is because there are some carriers who offer 4G and 5G network services. With such kinds of networks, you can trust that you will enjoy a fast internet connection. The download speeds will be high, and thereby, operations will be more efficient.
5. Ensure that your mobile hotspot’s firmware is up-to-date
Updating the firmware of your mobile hotspot can help you get the most out of your wireless connection. The good news is that these updates will help fix bugs that might interfere with how your router operates. At some point, you might be able to patch security vulnerabilities and thereby prevent future problems. This has worked well for many truck drivers out there.
6. Choose a decent mobile hotspot
Everyone would like to enjoy fast internet speeds when using a wireless internet connection. To make this a reality, you should consider using a decent router. It should support 4G LTE technology as this kind of network is fast when it comes to browsing and so on.
Also, it should be unlocked so that you can use the services of other carriers when necessary. Ideally, a modem/router combination will be a good choice for you. Finally, it should support an SD card so that you can transfer files to the SD card whenever you please. The more versatile the mobile hotspot it the better.
7. Keep the firewall enabled
By turning your firewall, you can be sure that hackers will not have unauthorized external access to your system. This is because a firewall normally offers adequate protection against such activities. However, you have to enable this setting in your device.
Besides this, the firewall normally acts as a barrier that protects your device from data-based malware threats. In fact, it normally monitors data packets that come from different networks and check them if they are safe for use or not. In case the data packet is malicious, it will be blocked by the firewall. As a result, your computer’s data will be safe when using a wireless connection.
8. Remember to install an antivirus in your computer
Besides keeping the firewall enabled, you should ensure that you install a reliable and updated antivirus program in your computer. The good news is that the antivirus will help detect malware that might get into your system when using the shared wireless network. For optimal results, you should always use the latest versions of the antivirus program.
In case a virus has been loaded onto your device, it will be shown on your screen. Besides this, it will let know if there is any suspicious activity or malicious attack that might compromise the safety of your laptop’s data. Generally, the antivirus program will help keep any malware at bay.
How Do I Install Wi-Fi In My Truck?
To start with, installing Wi-Fi in your truck will enable you to remain connected as you transport from one point to another. Here, you will be able to receive updates, email your boss and even keep in touch with those you love. You will also have an opportunity to stream videos and play games on your smartphone or laptop. This is the reason why Wi-Fi internet is more important for truckers. In fact, it’s better than a mobile hotspot.
With a download speed of up to 40 Mbps and an upload speed of up to 8.5 Mbps, you can be sure that you will enjoy a faster and reliable internet connection. As we speak, most wireless routers are compatible with booster antenna and data plans from different carriers. Since there are various data plans to choose from, you can trust that this will be a flexible solution for your truck. Here are the steps you should follow when installing Wi-Fi in your truck:
1. Purchase a mobile data plan
Without data plans, there is very little that you can do as far as browsing is concerned. Fortunately, there are many affordable installed mobile data plans you can consider today. However, as you try to figure out the best data plan for you, it is important that you make the following considerations:
- Know where you shall use the plan. Here, you need to choose a carrier that has a wide network coverage so that you can remain connected even when you are in a remote area. Ideally, you should choose a carrier that supports your entire route. Some of the providers that you can consider include Verizon, Sprint and T-Mobile.
- Know the amount of data you need. It is important to note that your data consumption will depend on several factors such as how much time you spend streaming, whether you are gaming or not, the number of devices that need to remain connected and so on. Therefore, there is a need to estimate your data usage and choose a plan that will offer sufficient data while allowing you to save some money in the long run. For optimal results, you should consider an unlimited plan.
2. Find a power source in your truck
Your wireless router will need the power to function even when you are in transit. There are some trucks that do not have electrical outlets. In this case, you might need to look for a power inverter to supply your wireless router with electricity. If the router uses standard plugs, the power inverter will be a good source of power for it and other devices that might need electricity.
3. Connect you wireless router to the power source
Once you have determined the power source in your truck, time is ripe for you to plug in your wireless router. Once you have powered on the router, it will automatically connect to the mobile broadband network of your choice. If you want to reboot the router, you just need to unplug it and then wait for 30 seconds before you plug it in again.
4. Install a booster antennae on the inside or outside of your truck
For optimal results, your internet connection should be strong and fast. Therefore, you need to install one or more optional booster antennas on the interior and exterior of your truck. Since you are installing the antenna in a moving vehicle, there is a need for you to choose a unidirectional antenna.
By following the above-mentioned steps, you will be able to install Wi-Fi in your truck and thereby enjoy a fast and reliable internet connection as you drive the truck. This way, you will get all the necessary updates you need on your smartphone and so much more.
It no doubts that wireless internet has changed both the professional and personal experience of truck driving. As we speak, communication is now simple, efficient, and more reliable. Truck drivers do not have to worry about late reporting, and so on. They can readily receive updates on their devices in real-time. Also, truck drivers have been able to socialize among themselves thanks to social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and WhatsApp. They can now make video calls to those they love and so on.
Besides, they can also search and know directions to their destination through Google maps. Basically, wireless internet has made truckers more interesting and less stressed. Install Wireless internet in your truck and semi-truck today, and you will not regret it.