After a successful 4-month pilot program, Volvo Trucks’ Driver Display Activation (DDA) application went into full production on Nov. 30, 2020. The new enhancement to Remote Programming, as part of Volvo Trucks’ Remote Diagnostics bundle of Uptime Services, now allows operators to directly activate over-the-air system updates within minutes at the next convenient time and location – whether that is at their next rest stop or back at the shop.
Volvo Trucks’ Remote Programming service provides fleet operators with a faster and more flexible way to make updates to software and parameters that enhance the performance of a truck’s engine, transmission and aftertreatment. Driver Display Activation moves the activation step into the cab and the hands of the operator, adding flexibility and another option over having to call a Volvo Action Service agent to initiate a remote update. This cuts administration and updating time in half and opens the service up to 24/7 availability. The new Driver Display Activation application puts more control into the hands of the customer and makes updating even faster and easier than ever.
“The capabilities of the new DDA application and the benefits it represents for owners and operators are part of a change journey in our industry,” said Rodney Lloyd, Global Program Manager and Pilot Leader, Volvo Trucks North America. “This pilot program further reinforced that the uptime and productivity gains from this feature will be a huge step forward for our customers.”
Driver Display Activation underwent multiple pilot testing phases, from dealer stock trucks to more than 500 customer trucks at 15 different over-the-road and vocational fleets. Lloyd heard from one national retail chain participating in the latest phase of testing that drivers initially expressed resistance to the new option, but quickly came to appreciate the new Driver Display Activation feature after one try. The Driver Display Activation service makes updating fast and secure and can easily be done inside a typical operator break. The participating customer was able to complete approximately 400 software updates in less than four weeks, with each vehicle taking minutes to convert instead of the typical 3 hours as previously experienced.
“We knew we had something really good at the onset based on the feedback we received from dealer technicians during our initial stock truck tests,” added Lloyd. “They realized that DDA is much easier and faster than pulling out a laptop for performing updates. They saw firsthand how this feature immediately added efficiency and decreased administration time.”
Rick Randall, Diagnostic Services Manager, Volvo Trucks North America, also notes the importance of keeping fleets updated on the latest software. “We have clear data showing that trucks running the latest software versions throw fewer faults and experience higher efficiency and less downtime,” said Randall. “Our goal with Remote Programming and Driver Display Activation is to make updating a breeze so more trucks can run optimally.”
Randall continued, “With DDA, the customer decides who is allowed to run the update. Most fleets are fine with the operator activating the update when prompted by an alert on the instrument cluster, but others may want to enable the password option that comes with DDA so only their technicians can update. The configurability removes any customer concerns over authorization. They can also choose between three cluster notification options. It’s totally configurable, and the preferences can all be managed remotely simply by calling Volvo Action Service.”
All new Volvo trucks built after Nov. 30, 2020, will have the Driver Display Activation interface available free of charge for the first 2 years, bundled with Volvo Trucks’ Remote Diagnostics services.
Trucks model-year 2018 and older can also benefit from Driver Display Activation by applying a simple conversion kit available in the diagnostic application, Volvo Premium Tech Tool, which enables the new technology to be implemented in less than one hour. Operators are not required to contact a Volvo Action Service agent or visit a certified Volvo Uptime dealer to update the vehicle; however, support is always available through the Volvo Trucks Uptime Center any time of day or night if needed. Fleet managers and owners can contact Volvo Action Service to have multiple qualifying vehicles updated simultaneously.