These stories represent new trucking industry news, reflecting the latest developments in the industry from both news sources inside the trucking industry and more “mainstream” coverage from larger news outlets.

New mobile app offers first trucking industry speak-and-search capability

A new mobile app called Carrier Dashboard 4.1 is believed to be the first mobile application for the trucking industry that features speak-and-search technology. The app was released May 19 from Total Quality Logistics and features an industry-specific vocabulary that is designed to move freight. The app has been in development for more than a year.

The app allows truck drivers to search for loads to haul while on the road (or, more safely, parked on the side of the road or at a rest area, restaurant or another safe location). The voice commands feature of the app cuts down on typos on small mobile device screens and is faster and more convenient than having to type.

“We are the first to market with a mobile application that allows drivers to search for loads with voice commands,” said TQL President, Kerry Byrne. “Technology is a serious competitive advantage. The faster carriers can find our loads, the easier it is for us to satisfy our customers’ delivery requirements.”

Using a “form of artificial intelligence” designed to continuously improve performance, Carrier Dashboard 4.1 is programmed to recognize regional accents and filters out most ambient noise. The app is designed to improve with each use.

“It’s cool; it did what it was supposed to do,” Marlino Mehmeti, a driver with Planet Xpress said of the speak-and-search feature. “I just told it place to place where I wanted to go and it got me the load I wanted. I’m telling people TQL has a very cool feature.”

Total Quality Logistics introduced the first mobile freight-finding app in 2011, which allowed carriers to use the app about 40,000 times during the first year. By 2014, the app’s usage grew by more than one thousand percent.

“We’ve focused heavily on increasing our investments in people and technology,” said Byrne. “And it’s paid off not only in our growth, but in our relationships with the carriers themselves.”

In addition to the aforementioned features, Carrier Dashboard 4.1 has the ability to send manual or automated location updates, has GPS tracking designed to yield better search results, gives automatic alerts when desired loads and lanes are available, gives payment status updates, and offers document scanning and paperwork receipt status updates.

One of the largest freight brokerage firms in the United States, Total Quality Logistics will operate 34 offices in 19 states by the end of August 2015. TQL works to connect customers who need to move truckload freight shipments with carriers having capacity to move them. TQL headquarters is located in Cincinnati, Ohio and has sales topping $2 billion in 2014. The company employs more than 3,100 people across the nation. You may connect with Total Quality Logistics  at TQL.com, on Facebook at Total Quality Logistics or on Twitter @TQLogistics.

This app underscores the still-emerging and evolving mobile application technology and displays how it can be adapted to service the trucking and shipping industries. The technology available for the trucking industry can serve to further connect drivers with clients and employers, can improve tracking, and streamline processes in order to create a more well-rounded, efficient workplace.

Improving efficiencies such as this can only be good for the trucking industry, which is in continued need to find a way to cut costs and add efficiencies that allows truck drivers to work at a faster pace. Apps such as these make the jobs of truckers and trucking companies easier and more efficient, and cut down on time out of the truck, and allows truck drivers to use their apps in a safer manner.

Carrier Dashboard 4.1 is available for both Android and Apple devices, Carrier Dashboard 4.1 is available at the Apple app store or Google Play.

This news comes courtesy of a press release. You can view the full release at this link.