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Discussion in 'Bidding & Estimating' started by snowconcepts, Jan 19, 2006.

  1. snowconcepts

    snowconcepts Member
    Messages: 68

    Does Anyone Or Has Anyone Used A Pda To Keep In Your Truck So You Can Keep Track Of What U Have Done During A Snow Event?
  2. Makndust

    Makndust Senior Member
    Messages: 324

    We use Log Books in our trucks. I guess a pda would be great. I have never thought of it. It would be really great if you have a template in it to just fill out for each job.
  3. We use IBM X41 tablet PC's, with a Verizon Wireless EVDO network card. All of our accounting is done in "real time" because the tablets in the trucks upload to our servers and database system when a truck gets on site and leaves a site.
  4. me1223

    me1223 Member
    Messages: 70

    how big is your fleet if you have the cash to run those?
  5. 30 plow trucks (12 w/Vbox)
    5 salt trucks

    We use it more often in the summer because of lawn care routes, etc.

    Send me an email if you want more info.

    d.daogaru at macomb-lawn.com
  6. snowconcepts

    snowconcepts Member
    Messages: 68

    Trying To Email You?

    I Tried To Email You And It Won't Let Me.
  7. Someone sent me an email about it. Here's a link to the laptops. I got an email from nel.. lawn at adel.com (full email address not show on purpose.)

    Anyways, the laptops are nice. They are mounted in the truck as a "touchscreen" tablet, and then out of the truck they are regular laptops. The nice thing about IBM is they are VERY secure (biometric thumbprint stuff) and also very rugged. The hard drives are "skip proof" and even in a dump truck, I've never had one fail on us. All the bumping around and elements don't even effect their operation. Then, add a Verizon Wireless Broadband card, and you have high speed internet in the truck. We use a VPN to connect to our servers, and then we have real time data to the office for billing, timesheets, etc.

    Last edited: Jan 21, 2006
  8. paponte

    paponte Senior Member
    Messages: 717

    Yes, I am interested also. We are in the process of switching over this year also, and have integrated software for our laptops and pda's as well. We do not have any "real time" wireless set up, but everything is hot linkable and downloads are fast. We've set up bar codes on all of our stock items, and are going to do the same for equipment for maintenance purposes.

    If it is cost effective, wireless would be nice. I eould think you would be able to process credit cards as well being on wireless, that would be a plus also. :cool:
  9. The cost is as follow:

    Verizon cards: Free
    Service: $59.00 a month (first line) and $10.00 per month each additional card.
    That is for unlimited data.

    The tablet pc's run Window XP Pro Tablet Edition. For customer management we use ACT! 2006 and a custom MS Access database.
    Here is a link to Verizons stuff: http://www.verizonwireless.com/b2c/mobileoptions/broadband/index.jsp
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2006
  10. I have a pdf my IT guy put together explaining it all but it's too big to attach on the forum. If anyone wants to host it and put it up online I can email it to you or if anyone wants a copy shoot me an email.

  11. me1223

    me1223 Member
    Messages: 70

    a few questions about the business if you don't mind;

    -how did you start out? and with what?
    -how long have you been in the business?
    -are you goin solo or do you have a partner in the business?
    -other than snowplowing what else do you do (I see you mentioned lawncare) so is that just maintainance or installs, and fert/chem. applications as well?
  12. norrod

    norrod Senior Member
    Messages: 113

  13. mrfreeze

    mrfreeze Junior Member
    Messages: 9

    PDA vs Notebook

    PDA technology is advancing more toward the Bar Code industry than the service industry. A standard notebook computer or a tablet touch screen with a small thermal printer can do practicaly anything. I run Access, Excel, Outlook and AutoCAD on mine.
  14. gardenkeeper88

    gardenkeeper88 Senior Member
    Messages: 115

    I have used a PDA for about 7 years. simple for 1 or 2 trucks. The program is called punch clock pro. I have the customers name then plow salt and shove under that. I touch the name and what service I'm doing then touch the next customer or next service and it automatically stops the time and switches it to the the next one I touch. This year will be my first year with QXPRESS. Bought the software last year for the summer season and now to start with the winter. It has worked well this year. Been using a PDA for about 10 years in a lot of different aspects of my business.