Rand McNally HD 100

The HD 100 is Rand McNally’s higher-end BYOD (“Bring Your Own Device”) ELD solution.  Rand McNally also makes a BYOD model called the ELD50  . The HD 100 is a plain black box that plugs into the vehicle’s diagnostic port. The black box reads engine data and driving status and communicates with an Android or iOS device of your choosing for display.

Cost

The HD 100 hardware is priced at $299 plus a monthly service charge.  The monthly service plans are the same that Rand offers for the 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 for the mounting platform

Device / Installation / Connectivity

Like most Plug n’ Play ELD models, installing the HD 100 black box is pretty straightforward and simple. The black box can be mounted and/or set on the dash and then a cable connects the box to the vehicle by plugging into the vehicle’s diagnostic port.  If you want to hide the box or the cables that can be done without much difficulty either but it will require more time.   

ELog Mobile App For Drivers

Rand McNally’s HD 100 works with the HD 100 App available to download on Android, the iPhone and iPad.  Users connect the HD 100 hardware to the HD 100 mobile app to make it a compliant E-log and fleet management solution.  The HD 100 App is free to download, but you must have an HD 100 ELD and a monthly service plan to use it.  For customers that 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.  Also the keyboard functionality leaves a lot to be desired.  

The HD 100 does not use Bluetooth – which is a distinction that separates it from all other BYOD devices that we have looked at and/or reviewed.   Instead the HD 100 communicates with the display device via WiFi. The benefit of this is that it can offer a more reliable and longer-range connection.  The major drawback is if a driver wants to connect the  device to any other WiFi networks he will first need to disconnect from the HD 100. Since the HD 100 will only allow communication with Rand McNally’s servers disconnecting from the HD 100 is a must you want to also use your device for email, web browsing or anything else. You will need to disconnect from the HD 100 and connect to a real WiFi network or to 4G.

Also rare among BYOD systems is the fact that the HD 100 does not rely on your phone/tablet for its communication. It is able to communicate essential infomation like GPS location and engine status even if the phone/tablet is turned off! This is a huge perk, and combined with the fact that the HD 100 can be mounted behind the dash without losing signal makes it probably the most tamper-resistant BYOD option on the market. In fact, since the HD 100 does its own communication, your display device does not even necessarily need a data plan. A simple WiFi-only tablet works just fine, thus saving the significant monthly cost of a cellular data plan.

Website For Fleet Managers

Fleet managers can monitor assets on the The back-office tools are functional, but definitely not slick. They too feel dated and perhaps in need of some renovation. That said, many of these issues are largely cosmetic, and are easily overcome with a bit of training and practice.

Additional Features / Comparison to Market

One of the major drawbacks of the HD 100 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 app by the end of 2016. The addition of Rand McNally’s excellent GPS would make this system a truly top-notch option in the BYOD ELD market. Some drivers complained that they could not make it work and had to return it. Others said they didn’t see it alert them when their driving hours were almost up.

Conclusion

The HD 100 is a simple but powerful BYOD device. While it does have some drawbacks to consider, it is a good option for fleets looking for a reputable solution at an affordable price point.