This report covers the overall market opportunity for vehicle-mounted devices, including forklift-mounted computers used to support enterprise and government line-of-business applications. The products covered in this research include purpose-built computers designed specifically to be mounted in a vehicle. Not included are general-purpose mobile form factors such as notebooks and tablets. Target applications and vehicle types include forklifts and material moving equipment, trucks for TL and LTL applications, police vehicles, emergency vehicles, and military vehicles. The report includes detailed market sizing and forecasts of vehicle-mounted computers, in addition to segmentation by region, industry, and application environments. The report discusses current trends driving investment in vehicle-mounted solutions and end-user requirements for next-generation solutions.
What questions are addressed ?
What is the outlook for vehicle-mounted devices used for enterprise and government mobility applications?
What is the relative opportunity by regional market, industry, and application?
What is the outlook for vehicle-mounted devices, and to what extent are they being impacted and potentially displaced by alternative devices, such as tablets?
How do mobile device requirements align with specific vertical markets and applications?
What are the primary device functionality requirements by industry?
Which mobile applications are end users currently supporting and/or planning to deploy?
What is the demand by mobile OS, and how does it differ by regional market, industry, and application?
The global market for vehicle-mounted computers has emerged from a period of considerable contraction due to adverse economic conditions, postponed purchasing decisions, and encroachment from alternative solutions such as tablets. However, following a tumultuous 2013, the market has stabilized somewhat in 2014. This stabilization has been strongest in the forklift segment in addition to the military segment, which is in the process of upgrading legacy FBCB2 computers with the updated MFoCS (Mounted Family of Computer Systems) platform.
The market for vehicle-mounted computers is highly fragmented across key applications or vehicle types. Opportunities are consolidated around four core segments, which include forklift trucks, police and emergency response vehicles, military vehicles, and private or for-hire trucking fleets. The solutions are typically customized by target application or vehicle class and their usage parameters. However, the desire to leverage standards-based mobile solutions and components is growing as organizations shy away from proprietary solutions.
With stringent durability and protection requirements, the majority of vehicle-mounted computers are - by design - rugged. While the specialized or niche status of this segment has mostly shielded it from broader trends impacting other rugged mobile segments, this is not to say it is without pressure. Nevertheless, there has been some experimentation with the use of consumer tablets in warehousing and distribution centers. In addition, the highly price-sensitive trucking segment is favoring low-end durable tablets or consumer-grade devices for its solutions.
Renewed economic output in the Americas and a larger trend toward modernizing vehicle-mounted solutions to further integrate them into an increasingly connected workplace will continue to drive growth. Overall, the market for both on-board/fixed vehicle mounts and forklift-mounted devices is forecast to grow at a moderate but healthy rate from XXX,XXX units in 2014 to XXX,XXX in 2018 for a combined CAGR of X.X%.
The vehicle-mounted market has emerged from its 2012 contraction and flat growth in 2013 to resume a growth trajectory in 2014. The Americas remain the dominant market by a considerable margin, representing approximately XX% of shipment volume. This is primarily a function of the significant spend in the military sector in the United States.
The global total vehicle mount market is forecast to grow by X.X% in 2014 to reach $XXX million. By 2018, the combined market is expected to reach $XXX million, for a CAGR of X.X%. VDC segments this market into forklift applications and trucking, police/emergency vehicle, and military vehicle applications. The forklift segment represents approximately XX% of the opportunity in 2014 and is expected to just exceed $XXX million in shipments. Other vehicle applications represent XX% of the opportunity, with shipments scaling to $XXX million in 2014.
The consolidation in the forklift-mounted mobile computer market through the acquisition of PSION, LXE, and more recently, Intermec have meant that market leaders Motorola and Honeywell have largely established their market share, leaving smaller companies to reposition by concentrating either on region or particular industry verticals. While Honeywell was able to maintain its leadership position, accounting for XX% of units shipped in 2013 and the first half of 2014, Motorola Solutions (now Zebra) saw its share decline from XX% in 2013 to XX% during the first half of 2014. Smaller, more specialized vendors - such as DLOG - were the primary beneficiaries.
Leaders in military and public safety vehicle-mounted applications include DRS, L3, Data 911, and Miltope, while Omnitracs remains the clear leader supporting trucking applications.
Global Market Overview and Forecast:Vehicle-Mounted Devices
Exhibit 1: Five-Year Vehicle Mount Global Forecast
Ideas & Insights
The vehicle-mounted market (excluding forklift applications) rebounded moderately in 2013 after a sizeable contraction from 2011 into 2012. VDC sizes the overall market at $XXX million in 2013 while it projects growth of X.X% in 2014, bringing shipments to $XXX million. The single-largest user category is the military, representing XX% of shipments in 2014, followed by public safety (XX%) and trucking (XX%). Each of the segments exhibits unique characteristics and requirements moving forward. Key trends impacting this opportunity range from the demand for dismountable solutions that can be used outside of the vehicle, decreases in vehicle cab sizes driving demand for smaller and more integrated solutions, and the impact on design on overall driver safety. Moreover, price sensitivity is acute in many segments, increasingly driving decision-makers to look at alternative hardware options including off-the-shelf consumer devices.
VDC estimates that forklift vehicle-mounted devices reached more than XX,XXX units in 2013 for a global market of $XXX million. VDC forecasts a shipment volume of nearly XX,XXX for 2014 to support material handling and supply chain applications. Newer solutions are increasingly moving away from green-screen applications and terminal emulations to incorporate voice-directed interfaces and other more sophisticated capabilities. This market tracks closely with shipments of forklift truck shipments, which grew by X% in 2013 and X% in 2014 (Source: Worldwide Industrial Truck Statistics). While the market still has some catching up to do to reach pre-Great Recession levels, it is enjoying increased stability. A variety of technologies have changed how these solutions are being acquired and managed, including great demand for fleet management services similar to the broader trucking market. There has been some displacement of purpose-built devices with rugged tablets - and more recently iPads - however, the unique usage characteristics in the warehouse generally favor specialized solutions. However, this is an extremely nuanced market with many unique requirements - from OS to display size, keyboard configuration, and wireless options. With the relatively modest volume potential and significant R&D requirements, this market is ripe for continued consolidation.