There is a lot of money in buses. The typical bus system is built from the ground up with the chassis, framer, air conditioning, dashboard, electronic cabinet and fare collection systems sourced from a variety of manufacturers. So the typical bus costs somewhere between US$300,000 and US$700,000.

Our client is an expert in global transit security solutions. Their business was primarily in providing the software and hardware design of CCTV computers for vehicles, specifically for buses and trains, but a decision was made that they would branch out and add more features to their vehicle computer. By incorporating more applications, their vehicle computer would be more valuable.

The additional applications would come from providing solutions such as: fare collection, IP/analog cameras, and multiplexing signals for buses.

The Challenge

To meet the challenge of these additional applications, the client wanted to rework their existing computer design into a more modular system that could include expansion opportunities. These expansion options would allow the client to produce a single chassis, while offering many combinations of applications. This also meant however that the client required multiple iterations of the same product, with different CPUs and different chassis options, a requirement that led to most partners turning them down.

The Solution

The search for a partner led to Lanner. While most companies surveyed for this project only wanted to offer ‘off the shelf’ solutions, Lanner was able to work closely with the client to come up with a truly customized solution. The client chose Lanner due to our holistic approach. Instead of worrying about specific products and stock keeping units (SKUs), Lanner is flexible enough to do things the client’s way.

Since Lanner owns its own manufacturing facilities it was easy to say yes to the many SKU variations. With the board level design being the same, Lanner produces all the boards at once, and simply change the system assembly lines to fit each SKU. Our production facilities have been designed to run the multiple assembly lines that such projects require.

Lanner was also chosen for its ability to pull entire projects together. Lanner’s logistics team can source, assemble and package a system tailor-made for a client. In this project we were able to purchase and package hard disk drives, memory, digital sign pieces and cameras. Lanner was the client’s global sourcing team. With this integration, Lanner offers better value and service when compared to other rugged computer manufacturers.

The final product is an in-vehicle Intel-based computer that the client will use in buses and other land vehicles. This Vehicle NVR is designed to be flexible and features many integration points for customization and connectivity, and it has been carefully engineered to withstand the rigors of transit vehicle use.

The system design integrates logging, video and audio surveillance and GPS tracking which is supported by comprehensive data management systems to deliver position-aware, fleet-wide surveillance and incident management solutions.

The Result

Lanner’s first project with this customer was deemed a success, with several hundred products made every two months, and installations of the product taking place worldwide. The client therefore chose to continue working with Lanner engineers to make their next customized product.

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