OTHER software companies can provide similar services and these include Wiltshire-based Exentra Transport Solutions, which offers its smartanalysis system. It has similarities with VDO-Siemens TIS-WEB in that it is a web-based system. Smartanalysis was developed using Microsoft .NET tech­nology and provides operators with soft­ware for their office-based computers. 'It is estimated that only 20-25% of all operators currently undertake detailed analysis of tachograph charts,' comments Steve Fisher, a director of Exentra Transport Solutions. 'The days of paying scant attention to complying with regulations is coming to an end as the advent of digital makes enforcement by VOSA and the police much easier and faster.'

Using card readers for driver’s cards and a download tool for the vehicle unit data, information is then uploaded to smart-analysis for analysis and report preparation. The data is then available for download as reports or in whatever format the operator requires. Future developments from Exentra will include the ability to upload data via GPS direct from vehicle units, fuel monitoring systems, driver and vehicle monitoring units and other on-board sys­tems using telematics, broadening further the system’s capabilities.

Chevin Fleet Solutions launched its FleetWave fleet management software in 2001. It too has been updated to accept digital tachograph and driver card data as well as information from tachograph card scanners. Sales manager Gavin Clark, said: ‘Chevin decided, as a matter of policy, to design a system capable of working with ALL tacho types, thereby offering cus­tomers the opportunity to choose the sup­plier or method that suits them and their operation best. Then we can use the flexi­bility of our software and interface struc­tures to gather the information that they need, providing the right reporting at the right time.’

In similar fashion, Jaama has developed its Key2 software (above) to accept infor­mation from digital tachographs. Key2 uses Microsoft .NET technology, which, says Jaama enables different XML compatible systems to exchange data, something which most computer systems are apparently unable to do. Key2 is also a web-based sys­tem incorporating a wide range of functions from vehicle and driver management to dis­posals, accident management and fuel card management.