Rand McNally ELD 50

The ELD 50 is Rand McNally’s entry-level BYOD (“Bring Your Own Device”) ELD solution.  Rand McNally also makes a BYOD model called the ELD50  . The ELD 50 is a small blue devuce that plugs into the vehicle’s JBUS 9-pin diagnostic port. The little blue plug reads engine data and driving status and communicates via Bluetooth with an Android or iOS device of your choosing for display.

Cost

The ELD 50 hardware is priced at $150 plus a monthly service charge.  The monthly service plans are the same that Rand offers for its TND 765. The Electronic Log only plan is $20/mo. The Basic plan adds messaging and is $30/mo. And the Enterprise plan adds advanced features like engine diagnostics, driver scorecards, critical event reporting and much more for $40/mo.

Since this a BYOD product, drivers will either provide their own device (i.e. Android phone or iPhone) or the company will need to provide a Wi-Fi tablet for drivers at additional cost. Also the ELD Mandate states that the display device must be mounted to the vehicle where the driver can see it while the vehicle is in motion, so that will be an extra marginal expense to buy and install a mounting platform

Device / Installation / Connectivity

Like most Plug n’ Play ELD models, installing the ELD 50 blue plug is pretty straightforward and simple. The blue plug just connects right into the vehicles JBUS 9-pin diagnostic port.  However, there was a big defect McNally overlooked; the plug rubs against the driver’s leg.  It’s extremely inconvenient, and dangerous.  Unfortunately, this is what we should expect from an entry-level device.

ELog Mobile App For Drivers

Rand McNally’s ELD 50 works with the ELD 50 App available to download on Android, the iPhone and iPad.  Users connect the ELD 50 hardware to the ELD 50 mobile app to make it a compliant E-log and fleet management solution.  The ELD 50 App is free to download, but you must have the ELD 50 hardware and a monthly service plan to use it.  For customers who have used Rand McNally’s TND 765 system, the app will look very familiar.  The App’s layout and design is very similar to Rand McNally’s TND 765 interface.  Much like the TND 765 display, the app is rather slow and the design looks like it comes from a previous decade.  he keyboard functionality leaves a lot to be desired.

Website For Fleet Managers

Fleet managers can monitor assets using the back-office tools. These Are functional, but not impressive. They are dated and in need of some renovation to reach modern aesthetics. Some of the interface improvements are cosmetic, and are overcome with a bit of training and practice.

Additional Features / Comparison to Market

One of the major drawbacks of the ELD 50 app running on your phone/tablet is that it does not yet include Rand McNally’s IntelliRoute GPS Navigation. However, this feature is under construction and may be added to the ELD 50 app by the end of 2017. The addition of Rand McNally’s GPS would make this system a good option in the BYOD ELD market.

Conclusion

The ELD 50 is a simple and cheap BYOD device. It is a very good option for fleets looking for a  reputable solution at a budget price point.