The trucking industry has long had a reputation for lagging behind the technological times. But the last five years has seen tech companies from Silicon Valley and beyond push the pedal to the metal, and suddenly the trucking industry is the darling of the tech world. Considering trucking is a nearly $800 billion industry, it’s no real surprise.
Market research company Frost & Sullivan now estimates the trucking app industry could be worth $35.4 billion by 2025.
“Fleet optimization apps will drastically bring down cost barriers to adopt services that were previously only accessible through traditional telematics players requiring hardware, helping small fleets and owner operators, which constitute 90 percent of the North American trucking carriers,” stated Chandramowli Kailasam, Team Leader Commercial Vehicle Research with Frost & Sullivan.
Trucking apps serve a wide variety of functions – from load matching to GPS tracking and more – but the common thread connecting them all is a push for greater efficiency and visibility in a sector that has long lacked both.
Players large and small have entered the trucking app fray, though success is far from guaranteed – regardless of size.
Most recently, ride-sharing giant Uber launched a freight matching app in May called “Uber Freight”. Despite the Uber name holding plenty of cache in the business world, the platform is off to what some are calling a “bumpy start”.
According to Insurance Journal, “What has emerged so far, industry watchers say, is a modest effort to build a brokerage service connecting truckers looking for loads to shippers with cargo to haul. [The platform] looks a lot like the firms it is trying to displace. Rival startups and old-line transport firms alike have come out with apps to match truckers to cargo. Uber Freight also uses a conventional call center and online “load boards” where truckers have found work since the dot-com era began.”
Bottom line, the field is wide open for mobile platforms that deliver on efficiency, convenience, and cost.