Tracking Solution with Google Maps

“We offer supply chain insight for numerous industries, including Offshore, Intermodal, Distribution and Aviation,” explains Frank Erftemeijer, Director/Board Member at Yellowstar. “By using modern tools with global partners, we can rapidly develop state-of-the-art software and open up new opportunities for the logistics market.” As a result of its rapid, user-friendly implementations, Yellowstar has seen a 300 percent growth rate over the last three years.

Google has published the following Case Study on their official website.     


To keep up with evolving logistics requirements and regulations, Yellowstar sought a mapping solution that would help its clients meet new regulations around asset-tracking accuracy, and would also allow them to locate their fleet at any time for improved planning and safety.

In particular, Yellowstar needed to incorporate a visualisation layer to showcase asset-tracking data. The implementation needed to be easy to use and update. It also needed to work offline, so that it would be accessible for customers in remote areas, like ship captains.

“The complete JavaScript support from Google Maps meant we didn’t need to reinvent the wheel, which saved a ton of time for us.”

It was also crucial that the mapping solution integrate seamlessly with multiple GPS devices and operating systems. The data tracked for each asset needed to be accurately recorded and integrated with the reporting and planning systems used by Yellowstar customers. The solution therefore needed to be compatible with technology used in the field as well as in back offices to track an entire fleet in real time.

Solutions: i&Land + Google Maps API

Yellowstar Solutions developed i&Land Solution for neska Container Line (before: Alcotrans), specifically for ship and barge tracking, by integrating the Google Maps technology with Star Flow. A main consideration for choosing Google was speed — the integration required just two weeks to complete. Developers could also use JavaScript, with access to Google’s technical support information and support from OniGroup. YellowStar attributes much of the success of i&Land to Google Maps’ user-friendly interface and intuitive features.

Captains can log in to the i&Land application while at sea and automatically access all of a ship’s route information on a single map display. Meanwhile, administrators who manage the route on the backend can create their own geofence boundaries, without needing a developer to code these specifications.

The i&Land solution utilises Google web services, which reduces the demand for internet usage on the ship and improves performance speed on the client side. The Google Maps interface is always up-to-date, which ensures captains’ surroundings are accurately reflected by i&Land’s solution. Google Maps also integrates seamlessly with the mobile platform, which makes it easy to load data and visualise pre-rendered mapping instances, even while offline.

IoT, tracking oplossing

At a glance

What they wanted to do

  • Allow non-technical users to make changes to the map in the field, including while in offline mode
  • Accurately track assets on a single integrated mapping platform
  • Improve estimated travel times and planning for each route
  • Automatically trigger events based on usergenerated geofences

What they did

  • Integrated Google Maps APIs into the i&Land Solution
  • Allowed users to quickly and easily make changes to the map and view information offline
  • Provided an up-to-date mapping display that users in the field can use to see their current location


Google Maps played a major role part in the overall success of the i&Land Project. Captains can now visualise their GPS location on a Google Maps background image and can define geofence boundaries to trigger certain events once a barge has reached a specific point along its journey.

i&Land also automatically delivers revised ETA information. Shipping ports are better able to plan around loading and unloading times for individual barges due to the more accurate time estimates. The system logs the routes taken by each barge as well as performance metrics throughout those journeys. The ability to provide more accurate ETAs for barges has helped to dramatically improve planning and resource allocation for future trips.

This integrated platform has also helped different user groups standardize on a tracking application, which improves collaboration and visibility. Yellowstar Solutions will continue to integrate Google Maps as new API features are developed. (Source: Google Maps 2016)


Yellowstar - always on the move


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