Modules, Platforms

Boatrax: An IoT-enabled boat monitoring solution

You can offset the cost of your house by utilizing its value in the sharing economy – sign up for AirBnB! You can utilize your car in the same way too – Uber and Lyft! The next logical asset to utilize might be your boat.

Miami, Florida based vessel tracking company Boatrax has created a unique IoT enabled boat monitoring solution to enable just that: The Boatrax Box.

Nautical Focus and Expertise

Boatrax is driven by one key goal: making life better for boat owners. Arturo Malave, co-founder of Boatrax, has been around boats for the entirety of his life. When it comes to the tracking of boat maintenance records, Arturo is intimately familiar with both the drawbacks of manual pen and paper solutions and much more expensive custom-created solutions for some of the larger super yachts that make up the higher end of the industry.

Creating the Boatrax Box was borne out of a need for effectiveness and simplicity. To that end, we promise a plug-and-play solution for our customers that allows themselves, their family, or their customers to enjoy their boat with peace of mind.

Arturo Malave, Co-founder Boatrax

Drawing from heir industry expertise, Boatrax selected the perfect sensors for the job, the right ruggedized case for harsh marine environments, and then designed these together in a way that would allow compatibility with the growing CAN bus-based NMEA 2000 communication standard. This industry-wide connectivity option exists in a way very similar to the now long-standardized OBD-II ports on cars.

A white boat is speeding through the ocean on a sunny day.

“We knew we had the right nautical parts – and we knew how important it would be to add the right partners to complete the end-to-end solution”

Arturo Malave, Co-founder Boatrax

Find the Right Partners

Boatrax partnered with Telit and other key partners to create their unique IoT boat monitoring solution.

MultiTech, a designer, developer, and manufacturer of Industrial Internet of Things data communication equipment, was brought in to offer a pre-certified cellular communication based with the Telit Cinterion xE910 module. Certified as an end-user device on many cellular carriers’ network, the MultiTech SocketModem Cell enables rapid creation of IoT products.

The ability to source a robust cellular communication solution based on industry-standard open interfaces allowed us to get prototypes up and running quickly, immediately helping to define the components of our final product

Arturo Malave, Co-founder Boatrax

The gateway is built on a number of mass-deployment ready pieces of hardware, including the industry proven Telit Cinterion xe910 family of cellular modules.

Combining the right amount of longevity, adaptability, and reliable RF performance, the xe910 family of cellular modules make up just one component of Telit Cinterion’s industry-leading selection of industrial-grade communications module spanning cellular, WiFi, Bluetooth, positioning, and more.

Engineered with the goal of enabling connectivity in product of any complexity with ease, the xe910 family of modules delivers the most comprehensive set of connectivity features in a compact form factor. Designed with compatibility in mind, Boatrax’s selection of the xe910 family of module means that Boatrax has a number of different communications networks to pick from, now and in the future – a key characteristic for a tracking solution meant to be mounted on something as mobile as a boat.

A key goal of Boatrax was to design their electronics only once, but also have the flexibility to operated globally. Any country? At network? No problem. Telit has the per-certified module that fits their existing PCB board design.

Similarly, Boatrax’s selection of Telit Cinterion’s IoT Platform as the base for its data collection and device management will help in keeping the organization agile and cost efficient. Acting as both a powerful IoT edge and device management solution, along as integration solution to IBM Watson, the deviceWISE Platform enables easy cloud management of the Boatrax solution. Vessel data is analyzed by IBM’s advanced ‘Watson’ suite of enterprise-ready AI services, providing predictive maintenance abilities.

During the prototype stage it was made clear we really needed to involve an IoT technology partner with device-side capabilities and expertise to complement the impressive intelligence of Watson’s cloud and big data analytics. deviceWISE makes our organization as agile as a startup should be. Our development team isn’t learning CAN bus integration, device management capabilities, or other hassles; deviceWISE already has that handled.

Arturo Malave, Co-founder Boatrax

High Seas, High Profits

Launching in October 2018, the Boatrax product is uniquely positioned to capitalize on what is a rapidly growing market.

People rent their houses, they rent their cars, and now more and more people are renting their boats. Boatrax provides these owners peace of mind; not only in knowing where their boat is, but its mechanical condition as well.

Arturo Malave, Co-founder Boatrax

IBM Watson ingests the data collected from users boats and suggests course of action for repair; going so far as to create a truly predictive maintenance solution for their customers. Customers’ boats are up and running longer, leading to high revenue generation potential in boat sharing schemes.

By selecting Telit Cinterion for their end-to-end IoT solution, Boatrax enjoys simple data collection from things and easy transfer and management of data. Combined, these two factors enable Boatrax to focus on their core competency and powerful differentiator: the end-user value provided by the Boatrax solution.

Let us know if you are interested in working on a customer case study.