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March 12, 2021 | 12:03


With the growing popularity of vehicle management systems, there is a need for a GPS tracking feature implementation. The main advantage is the constant real-time fleet management condition and passing this data to the management’s department. But what if fleet owners want to have a custom GPS vehicle tracking system? Here in this article, we will figure out how to develop a custom GPS tracking system, which modules does it need, and how much does the developing process cost.

How to Develop a GPS Vehicle Tracking System

GPS (global positioning system) uses satellite signals to share the data about the location, speed, direction about the specific transport with a tracking device. For example, logistic companies use particular software on each tablet of a driver’s cab to help them share only accurate data. To perform proper communication via GPS tracking apps, drivers have to have direct access to the Internet. Otherwise, satellite signals will not be submitted. GPS will help to define the location, but not the route to reach it as navigation does.

Types of GPS vehicle tracking systems

Types of GPS vehicle tracking systems

There are three main types of GPS vehicle tracking systems. According to the market needs, any of them might be applied and used. Let’s browse over each one:

Data loggers

These are the primary GPS trackers which typically have an onboard memory where information is stored & can be recovered in need. For example, some digital cameras save time and date when the photo was taken. Some other data loggers can be used to keep track of the fleet.

Data pushers

Data pushers usually consist of two parts, such as location devices and tracking software. Typically this type of GPS vehicle tracking system stores information and pushes it to another device. The hardware device is installed into the vehicle and connected to the ignition system switch, CAN-bus, battery. It collects extra data and then transforms it into a GPS tracking server. The data is easily accessible to view on a device such as a smartphone or a computer. All information from the hardware is pushed to the software, that’s why these types of trackers are called pushers.

Data pullers

They are comparing to the data pushers, which usually send the push notification about the exact location. There are also data pullers that transfer information to the device in a more constant way. Comparing to pushers, data pullers send information in at minute intervals. Pullers programmed to send information when a vehicle passes a definite speed or begins a geo-fenced zone. The data is transferred to a server where the information is regained and pulled into a software. Data pullers help to optimize routes and check the vehicle condition.

Building a GPS tracking system hardware

GPS tracking system hardware

For logistic companies, the decision to make a GPS vehicle tracking system is to opt between data pusher and data puller. For both types, there is a need to have custom hardware and connect it to the software. Here is a list of the principal hardware components:

  • GPS module to determine the location, time, and intervals the vehicle is passing, there have to be installed a GPS module. GPS tracking device costs approximately 45$.
  • Microcontroller unit (MCU) is a small computer with a processor, memory, input/output peripherals. The price for this hardware is approximately 35$.
  • GSM module to establish mobile communication, you need to have a GSM module. It is a kind of phone with the sim card and costs approximately 90$.
  • A relay circuit is integrated into the GPS module to communicate with the vehicle on the move.
  • The display screen needed to monitor a vehicle’s location and can be installed wherever you wish.
  • Features to make a GPS vehicle tracking system software

    Features to make a GPS vehicle tracking system software

    When you’ve decided to make your own GPS tracking system, it is expected not just to reveal where the vehicle is being driven, but also how it’s being driven. The GPS tracking system should recognize fast speed, extreme speed, and show where this behavior occurred. Besides, vehicle trackers can show cheap gas stations nearby and show their rate according to the recent feedbacks. 

    The information, as mentioned above, is possible to get from the software, which proceeded with the hardware data and share the final result. So, according to the details as mentioned above, let’s figure out the core features GPS tracking software needs to include.

    GEO fencing

    Develop a GPS tracking system for Android and iOS with the possibility to identify the location and build a path for your vehicle. Customers will need to put the start and endpoint of their route. That’s why away from the start point towards the destination is an important feature.

    Location detecting

    The software has to be aware of detecting the exact location for a specific time. For example, your company received the order without a precise address, but the location detecting feature will help to share the accurate data with the driver immediately. 

    Real-time tracking

    A real-time GPS vehicle tracking system determines actual data about the location and tracks the current status of your vehicle. The features mentioned above don’t make sense without the real-time data exchange. The ability to detect location immediately and set the right path will help to reach the destination in time.

    Fuel control

    The software needs to share the current fuel usage status and continuously monitor it. Fuel control feature is another obvious thing for GPS vehicle tracking software. It not only manages the fuel status but also ensures drivers’ safety preventing them from an unexpected accident. 


    Any type of alerts related to over speed, run out of fuel, when someone runs the car outside, etc. Among the possible notifications could also be the defined location or time reminder in case it was set to remind about a particular event.

    Engine block

    This vital block is similar to fuel control, in which either driver or manager can check real vehicle condition and prevent misuse. There could be different causes, but to ensure the vehicle’s proper work, it’s better to check the engine continually. 

    How to make your own GPS tracking system?

    When the feature set for software is bright and hardware components also, the next we will do is to define the development process. GPS tracking system development contains three main stages:

  • Creating a tracking tool
  • Establishing required hardware
  • Build GPS tracking system software
  • We already mentioned that you’d need an MCU, GSM and GPS modules, a relay circuit, and a display screen. How will these all stuff interact with each other? A vehicle tracking system using GPS sends a request to the modem via the device. Then, the GSM modem forms and transmits it to the MCU where the demand is performed. After the MCU is ready, you need to build a GPS tracking system for a vehicle for interpreting the range and longitude and showing the vehicle location. 

    If you need to check more than one vehicle, you’ll have to develop a web-based system, including a web application, for some businesses, both web and mobile apps, and a server framework. You will need to design a visual part of the website and then create a desktop and/or mobile app. Here are the steps to follow during the web app development:

  • Idea stage & project prototype;
  • UI/UX design;
  • Programming stage;
  • Testing and bug fixing;
  • Product launch & further maintenance.
  • The benefits of building up your own GPS tracker include the compliance of the elements and a flexible work process. Another point is building up a custom system that will require either an in-house IT department or work with the other development teams. Both options work well, but the GPS vehicle tracking system cost will be different.

    How much does it cost to make a commercial vehicle GPS tracking system?

    The final cost of GPS vehicle tracking software depends on the number of features you want to have, and the number of cars supported by the system. To support less than ten vehicles, you will need underlying software per less than 10,000$. The price for a full-fledged GPS tracking software will take around 40,000$ – 150,000$. For such a solution, the development time will take one or two years. To reach the software, you don’t need to wait until the end of the development process. It will be enough to launch MVP with the original features and then complete this solution with more features.

    Aside from development, there will be further product maintenance per additional cost. The best solution for such a complex product will be an in-house team with a piece of in-depth knowledge of logistics software development. We don’t recommend working with freelancers. Despite the price, there are no other advantages. Only an experienced team with a complete management service will deal with GPS tracking system development.

    We at AMCON Soft will gladly become your development partner. We will consult you about the initial set of features to develop because of the deep understanding of the niche. Don’t hesitate to contact us now, and receive a brief estimate of your automotive GPS tracking system.


    #Custom Software#Logistics#Transportation
    Views: 2127
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