lament for a missing shortcut key

Missing U

BlackBerry Apps

A selection of handy apps all within Gadget Box for BlackBerry 10

BlackBerry Apps

Tweetings for Twitter released for BlackBerry 10 devices

Contests

Enter to win a free copy of CAMultimate Camera Tools for your OS 6/7 BlackBerry!

BlackBerry Apps

Need a GTD organizer to sort out your to-dos? Check out Wise Tasks for BlackBerry smartphones

PlayBook Apps

Instantly shuffle your music library with Next Songs for the BlackBerry PlayBook

BlackBerry Apps

Keep tabs on Saint Nick and countdown to Christmas with Santa Tracker

PlayBook Apps

Files and Folders for PlayBook updated to v6.0 - Adds built-in streaming media player, bug fixes and more!

PlayBook Apps

Chronicle your ideas and memories with A Day in Life - Journal for the BlackBerry PlayBook

BlackBerry Apps

Want BBM on your PC? You can with Blurts for BlackBerry smartphones

BlackBerry Apps

Photo Studio updated to v1.1.13 for BlackBerry and BlackBerry PlayBook

BlackBerry Apps

BeWeather update brings BBM integration

BlackBerry Apps

Bring the comic book to the real world with Blips for BlackBerry smartphones

BlackBerry Apps

Help Me (FREE ) for Blackberry Smartphones – Emergency Siren Device with Auto SMS and GPS locator

BlackBerry Apps

ZonaSnap updated to v2.4.2 adding filters, frames, and editing to your screen captures

BlackBerry Apps

Fancy using your touchscreen as a phone keypad? You can with easyDial for the BlackBerry Bold

BlackBerry Apps

Chimpantech releases two new photo editing applications for BlackBerry smartphones

PlayBook Apps

Files and Folders updated to v5.1 - adds SkyDrive support, better Google Drive, UI enhancements and more!

PlayBook Apps

Newspile for the BlackBerry PlayBook updated to v1.1.1

BlackBerry Apps

Impress your friends with witty updates with Status Shuffler for BBM

< >

Software Review: trackIT - Vehicle Edition

By Ryan Blundell on 8 Apr 2008 10:02 am EDT
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...

trackIT: Vehicle Edition

A BlackBerry is the best way to keep you mobile. Some people and companies also use vehicles to stay mobile while being mobile. In order to stay mobile while being mobile, you can use your mobile device to track your mobile’s information so you can keep your mobile mobile. Whew… make sense?

Ok, I’ll go into a little more detail. Javatek Media deployed their trackIT Business Suite which includes the Expense, Vehicle, Custom and Currency Editions. Let’s face it, it’s getting more and more costly to stay on the road, more specifically the cost of fuel. The Vehicle Edition of trackIT is a promising application that will help you keep track AND keep you on the track. We’re going to take a test drive with the Vehicle Edition, through all of the twists and turns, and then pop the hood and see what it’s made of.

Start Your Engines!

TrackIT requires an OS of 4.0 or higher, so it can be used on almost any BlackBerry. After you download trackIT, the application can be found on your BlackBerry’s desktop as an orange car.  It was very close to the CrackBerry orange, so I parked next to the CB icon.

Open the program and you will find yourself behind the wheel of trackIT, waiting for you to rev its engines. Okay, I thought to myself, where’s the ignition? I moved the trackball around and my eyes and smile widen. Instead of your run of the mill text base menu, the dash itself is the menu, as well as the radio and air controls!

TrackIT
a unique interface, time for a joyride

First things first, enter in your Vehicle(s) information such as make, model, VIN and plate number. You’re able to keep record of your Fuel, Mileage, Expenses & Maintenance. With each entry, you have the choice to enter a lot or a little amount of data, as seen in the images below. The key is to be diligent, since the program will serve you best when you use it to its full extent. Picture yourself trying to figure out your gas expenditures at the end of the month by trolling through receipts or bank statements. Not so much fun, is it? Throw trackIT in the mix. Keep on top of it by continually entering information in the odometer, price of gas, amount of fuel purchased etc, and trackIT will crunch the numbers and present you with your total running cost. It pays to put as much info as you can.

trackIT
enter unlimited vehicles

trackIT
…yes, I’m Batman

trackIT
capturing where your money is going

When entering information in any of these fields, you will see a little checkbox to select a “business” expense. This is an extremely important feature if you rely on your vehicle for business or manage a fleet of vehicles, and need to be continuously efficient. Not only can you add expenses in the Maintenance section, you can also set Maintenance Schedules.  Just incase your memory doesn’t cooperate like it use to, it will remind you  when to get a tune up or rotate your tires. You can also store contact information for your repair shops.  Reliability is hard to find, so you don’t want to lose your contacts you have trusted with “your baby” through the years.

trackIT
Was it Jack’s or Mack’s Auto Shop…?

Besides these fields, you also have the Vehicles and Features options. TrackIT allows you to follow virtually unlimited vehicles, keeping your BlackBerry thumbs quite busy.  
As you add each new entry into the fields, you can select which vehicle your entry pertains to.

So, now let’s say you have all been good little keeners and have been using trackIT to the fullest. You now want to see the fruits of your labor. Select “Features” and bask in the powerful options that lay before you.

On your BlackBerry, you can view Graphs to help visualize your Fuel/Distance/Maintenance Costs and your Trip Distances. Another option is to view Summary Reports, which includes average prices, fill up levels and distance between fill up.

Uh-oh, it’s the end of the month and your expense reports are due. Your colleague fumbles through receipts trying to add them up or even irking the accounting department. They’ll smile as you walk in, knowing you use trackIT to export your reports to Excel or HTML files.

As with all great BlackBerry applications, trackIT utilizes shortcuts. From the Menu Screen use:

  • f for fuel
  • m for Mileage
  • e for Expenses
  • t for Maintenance
  • s for Maintenance Schedule
  • v for vehicles
  • o for features
  • r for Registration
  • n for New Mileage
trackIT
trackIT features

trackIT Reports and Graphs
view reports of any entry

trackIT
the Graph Report

trackIT
the Summary Report

One last feature to mention, is the ability to change the color scheme of trackIT. To show off my CrackBerry pride, I think I will stick with orange.

Waving the checkered flag

Although trackIT is a great application, I wish the information I store could be more secure. To date, the only way to secure it is to lock your BlackBerry. Because of this, I would never store a VIN or plate number. It’s one of a kind interface will make data entry more enjoyable, as you feel you are behind the wheel of a car. This is the only time that using a BlackBerry behind the wheel is safe. The CrackBerry.com store offers trackIT: Vehicle Edition for $24.95

Pros

  • Manage every aspect of your vehicle(s)
  • Sort, filter and export data
  • View Graphs and Summaries
  • Fun “dash board”

Cons

  • Data not as secure as I'd like
Download

Reader comments

Software Review: trackIT - Vehicle Edition

6 Comments

Mileage manager is a great simple application from what I've read. trackIT just offers more. You can track unlimited number of cars, manage a maintenance schedule, repair shop contacts and fuel. Plus you have the ability to view a Graph report and a Summary report.

...and who wouldn't want to track their wheels behind the wheel of an amazing interface?

I've been using TrackIt Vehicle edition for many months and have three items to add to the "cons" list. First, the data do not sync automatically when you sync the device, which means there's no automatic, regular syncing. You have to "export" all the data by sending it via email, or export it via USB through a complicated, manual process. Either way, if you haven't done this for a while, you've put a lot of data into the device with no backup. Over-the-air backup would be great.

My second gripe is with the degree of mental energy required to enter all the data: it could be much easier, and allow you to get it done faster, so that you don't get honked at while entering data at a red light. (I used to use a program for the Treo that was much faster and easier, even with all the difficulties of using a stylus.)

My third gripe is that there's no time stamp applied to each entry. If you made 3 trips in one day to the [insert destination here], but for each one you took a different route, or stopped for a [blank], there's no telling which trip was which when you look at the exported data later. There's also no way to use the data to track how long it took to get somewhere. Again, the Treo software (I've forgotten what it was) allowed me to do that. It was good to be able to know that the trip to [blank] usually takes a specific period of time - it helped to estimate future trips to nearby destinations.

Even with all of that, it's a very good program. As with so many others, it forces you to collect data as you go, rather than trying to find it all months later. I hope some of my issues will be addressed in future versions.

After using this for just a day, and trying Mileage Tracker Pro let me give you MHA.

I like the user interface with TrackIt. Easy to get around. Pretty easy to enter data. Allows for more than one vehicle. All of these things are nice, but the exporting of data, and tracking of data leaves much to be desired.

I need something to keep track of my data for work, personal, medical, etc. over a long period of time. When I exported my data from TrackIt it was sent to my computer and stored in a pdf file on my computer, but all the data I entered on the phone was gone. Strange. I wanted it still there to compare or add to later for an export. There is no online feature as I can tell.

With MileageTracker Pro I found it easy to install. The onboard setup was a snap. Learning to move through the menus was a little bit tricky and figuring out how to add back dates and the like took some getting use to. The feature I like is the ability to sync to the MileageTracker website where you can view, add, or print reports. The sync is very simple and the reports very flexible. I like the ability to add categories to your mileage tracker.

You have a 30 day full version trial feature on Mileage Tracker Pro where it is only a week on TrackIt. I give my vote, thus far to MileageTracker Pro. At least for me, it fits my needs.

I also use, and much prefer, Mileage Tracker Pro. It offers a lot more over this application and service (which I have used in the past).

I didn't buy this app specifically because just to "check" an item as being done required several keypresses. Instead of rolling the ball over the checkbox and pressing in the ball to get a menu to say "check" all you can do is "edit" the item in yet another screen, change that menu item to "completed" and then back out of it and save. WAY too much work for such a common task.