Q-Free has unveiled its first-ever device manager to save customers thousands on traffic signal controller updates. The new Intelight Device Manager is free to all current and future operators of the company’s award-winning Intelight MAXTIME local controller software, the product will radically improve the time and cost associated with firmware updates by enabling them to be remotely scheduled and run in bulk, without the need for on-site traffic technicians or putting the intersection in flash.
“This is a game changer and a huge win for our customers,” said Mike Clance, eastern regional manager of urban sales and Q-Free product manager for Intelight systems. “No other vendor of traffic signal control software can remotely schedule and administer batch updates across an entire state; let alone without putting the intersection signals into flash.”
Traditionally, when traffic controller software updates are issued – which can take place as often as one to two times per year or more – trained traffic technicians must travel to each intersection and perform the update in the field. This generally involves putting the intersection into flash, a potentially hazardous scenario for technicians and motorists alike. The process is generally handled by two technicians, for safety purposes, and can conservatively be completed in 15-20 minutes per intersection.
The potential cost savings for a mid-sized agency with 300 signalized intersections could be up to $30,000 per upgrade before considering equipment fees or travel time to and from each location. “The safety and cost-saving implications for the end user of this product are profound,” said Clance.
Q-Free is currently working to install 10,000 traffic controllers at signalized intersections throughout the state of Georgia, which remains the single largest procurement of signal systems software and hardware in the United States to date. It was during this project that the initial idea to develop the Intelight Device Manager came about from the partnership between Q-Free and the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT). Of the planned intersections in Georgia, approximately 7,500 are complete and the remaining 2,500 will be finished next year. By the same conservative estimates, the Intelight Device Manager could save the state $1 million or more per year.
The web-based Intelight Device Manager allows operators to select and schedule groups of intersections to be remotely updated at a specific time with just a few clicks on a computer, tablet or smartphone – all without the need for a central traffic management system. At the designated time, the Intelight Device Manager will execute the update and controller safety checks will validate the new software; all without putting the signal into a state of flash. If anything looks suspect, the controller will revert to the earlier version of the software and send an alert to the Intelight Device Manager.
“We’re in the process of finalizing testing on the new Intelight Device Manager with several of our key partners, and we really can’t wait to deliver this product to all of our existing and new customers, free of charge,” Clance concluded. “We’re grateful to GDOT for being progressive and working with us on this project. At Q-Free, we’re excited to lead the charge to a brighter future for controller updates.”