Regular readers will recall Mikhail Dzarasov, who in his early 20s pivoted from intents to join the community of truck owner-operators to build and design the Road Hunter smartphone app for truckers’ trip-planning needs. For the 150,000-plus drivers who’ve downloaded the app since launch — structured with a close focus on route-planning with points of interest and weather in mind to date — today is a “big day,” he told me in early messages early this morning.
“We just released 100 percent free truck turn-by-turn navigation for U.S. and Canadian truck drivers,” he says, with an app update. “Now users can choose the truck height and weight when generating the route” and thus avoid low bridges and potential overweight fines.
“Besides that,” Dzarasov adds, “we let users to choose hazmat type, if they have one.”
Such features, he says, have been available via other services largely for a fee, often assessed monthly. Road Hunter, available for iOS and Android devices, “is providing it for free.”
A quick run through the app reveals a barter-type system by which the developer awards points for information sharing — Road Hunter is requesting users update parking-lot statuses in a manner similar to what Trucker Path has long done, providing reviews of truck stops to which they’ve been, and the like. Each times users do that, they accrue points associated with their internal profiles — those points, in turn, are what they use to enable the navigation feature.
It’s an interesting system, and with luck and more use by subsets of operators without truck-specific navigation, it might well help more avoid — yes, yet another instance of such here — plunging their rigs into rivers after collapsing 6-ton bridges with their 40-ton combos while following consumer-targeted GPS navigation.
As development continues for the app, launched initially with the needs in mind of a close community of drivers in the United States Dzarasov fell in with after growing up largely in North Ossetia in Russia, Dzarasov says he’s planning some level of integration with various products and transportation management software in use by drivers and small fleet owners with hopes of delivering on the promise of no-cost truck-specific navigation for most “all U.S. truck drivers.”
Read more about Road Hunter’s origins via this link, and updates that have occurred since in the post linked below. If you try out the new navigation, let us know how it works for you.