The BlackVue Cloud paid plans (Basic, Smart, Fleet) just got a big update. The GPS Tracking aspects have been overhauled to reflect users’ feedback and improve the overall experience.
What features for what accounts
To access the GPS Tracking features on the BlackVue Windows Viewer, you must have a Fleet Plan (the macOS Viewer does not support these features at this point).
The BlackVue App for iOS/Android features are available to everyone with a paid Cloud plan (Basic, Smart, Fleet).
Finally, Video On Map, a brand new feature detailed further below, is available to Fleet Plan users exclusively.
To get started in the BlackVue Viewer for Windows, follow these steps:
- In the Viewer, make sure you are in Cloud Viewer mode and logged in.
- Click on Fleet Tracking, then GPS Tracking.
- Select a dashcam.
- Choose a date or date range > the list of available routes for the selected time period will load below automatically.
- Select the routes you want to view and click Show Routes.
On the BlackVue App, the steps are as follows:
- Go to BLACKVUE CLOUD > Select a dashcam > Tap the GPS Tracking icon.
- The app will display the most recent route by default.
- Tap the Search (magnifying lens icon) or Tracking Logs (location arrow icon) button.
Rebuilding the GPS Tracking features from the ground up
The main area of focus for this update was GPS Tracking and how to make it more user-friendly and useful. This makes sense as BlackVue Fleet Tracking’s attractiveness lies in its ability to satisfy the needs of fleet managers with just a BlackVue dashcam. To do so, the team took into account existing users’ feedback while benchmarking competing GPS tracking solutions. As a result, the new GPS Tracking is easier to use and also more powerful and accurate.
More intuitive search and auto-generated routes
First, the search function was rebuilt to be more intuitive. You can now easily select a date range in the calendar window and routes will automatically load below. Then you just have to select the routes you want to display on the map and in the detailed tracking logs window and hit “Show Routes”.
If you used GPS Tracking prior to this update, you will notice that the concept of Routes is new. Indeed, instead of displaying all GPS tracking data as a whole, the new GPS Tracking segments GPS data into Routes.
How are routes generated?
Routes are trips auto-generated from the tracking logs. The software recognizes what looks like a single trip based on the GPS data and timestamp. Doing so, it arranges the GPS data into routes that you can expand and collapse to reveal all their detailed coordinates.
The following factors determine how routes are generated:
- GPS / Cloud connection interruption: GPS data is grouped in a single route as long as Cloud and GPS connectivity is maintained over a period of 30 minutes. If no Cloud or GPS connectivity for over 30 minutes, a new route is created. For example, you could be driving in an area with no GPS connectivity for several minutes. If GPS connectivity resumes before 30 minutes, the route will represent the portion with missing GPS data as a dotted line and continue logging data under the same route. If GPS connectivity resumes after over 30 minutes, a new route will be created.
- Parking Mode session: if the dashcam remains in Parking Mode for 4 hours or more, the Parking Mode-related data will be stored under the first route. Upon exiting Parking Mode, a new route will be created.
- Power off: when the dashcam powers down, the current route ends. A new route will be created when the dashcam powers back up.
- 24 hours: after 24 consecutive hours of tracking, the current route will end and a new route will be created.
Increased GPS polling rate
The new GPS Tracking improves route accuracy by reducing the interval between tracking logs. From one minute previously, the interval is now down to 15 seconds. As a result, the routes closely replicate the actual itineraries used by equipped vehicles.
Note: the video-embedded GPS data are recorded at 1Hz (1 set of coordinates per second). The 15-second interval is the rate at which GPS data get uploaded to the Fleet Tracking Cloud server.
New Video On Map (Fleet Tracking account only)
Whenever an Event video is uploaded to the Cloud (Auto or manual upload), it can be accessed via the map. The data logs with videos associated are highlighted on the map so you can view them easily. If you click on any log on the map, an popup opens to show info related to that specific data point. In case a video is associated with that data point, a thumbnail and play button will show in the popup. By clicking the thumbnail you can play the video instantly.
Better user experience
The new update contains multiple quality-of-life improvements that make the whole experience more enjoyable. We have listed the main improvements below.
Closer zoom level
With the update, you can zoom in closer than before on the map.
One-click zoom to coordinates
Along with thumbnails, the data log popups also have a button that centers the map and zoom in on the location. This allows to quickly focus on an area of interest with a single click.
Tracking logs and routes highlight
Double click a route in the tracking logs to highlight it on the map.
You can also click a single log to highlight it on the map and vice versa.
In both case, the corresponding route in the route list will be highlighted as well.
Parking Mode videos stacking
When in Parking Mode, it’s possible to have multiple videos recorded and auto-uploaded to the Cloud. Now, Parking Mode sessions are clearly indicated on the map and their popup includes a scrolling list of uploaded videos recorded during a session.