Husqvarna enters the arena of connected outdoor power products

The landscaping business is about to become connected. Utilising sensors on outdoor power products, landscaping businesses and their landscaping teams will get improved control of up-time, machine handling, and vibration reports, all in the name of safer and more productive landscaping operations. Starting in August, a beta period of Husqvarna’s new innovative solution kicks off in seven countries.

Say farewell to guestimates and unexpected downtime in the landscaping business. Husqvarna, part of Husqvarna Group, the world’s largest producer of outdoor power products, introduces Husqvarna Fleet Services, a cloud-based service that connects the machine-fleet and the landscaping teams directly to an on-line portal, enabling landscaping businesses to get substantially improved business insight of their operations, right at their fingertips.

By mounting a small wireless machine sensor (data collector) to each piece of the outdoor power equipment, it becomes possible to optimise the use of equipment in the business. Whenever the product is in use, data on engine-on time, engine r.p.m. distribution, temperature, operator ID’s and more is collected wirelessly and uploaded onto an online portal. The data enables managers to determine operator’s exposure to vibrations, the need for service on the equipment, optimisation possibilities and more. The information can be accessed via a computer and a mobile application.

“New technologies such as cloud-based M2M solutions have made it possible for Husqvarna to develop a unique solution that allows modern landscaping businesses to go from estimates to facts. The data enables maximum performance and profitability of business operations, as well as learning more about employee wellbeing in the process,” says Håkan Wahlgren, project manager at Husqvarna Group.


Beta launch
Following a productive pilot period, Husqvarna Fleet Services is now ready to go into Beta mode, which will start in August. During the Beta phase Husqvarna will monitor system performance, support procedures and also measure the perceived value from the different cloud-based services.

At present, landscaping businesses in seven countries (Australia, France, Germany, Netherlands, Poland, Sweden, and UK) are participating in the on-going pilot. The majority of those landscaping businesses will also participate in the open Beta phase, which starts in August.

The machine sensor is designed for Husqvarna Commercial Lawn and Garden products such as ride-on mowers, walk-behind mowers, and the handheld commercial range with trimmers, backpack blowers, hedge-trimmers, and chainsaws and is in the final development stage for Husqvarna’s new Pro Battery machines.


How it works – an example
Imagine that the sensor on the ride-on front mower sends the fleet manager a message that it needs a service 25 hours ahead. The same message can also be sent to the closest Husqvarna-dealer, giving them a heads-up if spare parts need to be ordered or if it is necessary to book time for a service. Not only would you be able to book a service, but also plan your maintenance, maximising uptime, enabling a proactive maintenance strategy.


Hardware and data
1The sensor platform for Husqvarna Fleet Services consists of a machine sensor for each machine, an optional Operator card (OpTag) and a Base station to transmit the data to the cloud. All collected data is then accessed via an online portal or a mobile application.

The data about the machines usage and operator status is processed from each machine and sorted into four main categories:

1. Workday log – gives a quick answer to how productive the company really is, visualising how much the whole fleet, or individual machines, are being used. With that information, it becomes clear if the fleet needs to be expanded or not.

2. Interactive maintenance system – keeps track of all machines and alerts both the service manager and Husqvarna dealer before maintenance intervals. Each machine family has a dedicated maintenance program leading to maximum up-time, safer machines, prolonged machine life and better control.

3. Machine handling – allows managers and operators to understand whether the individual products in the fleet are used in an optimal way. Improved machine handling can prolong product life, improve productivity, and reduce fuel consumption and more.

4. Vibration reports – focuses solely on operators. Though Husqvarna constantly strives to minimise vibration, all power tools generate a certain level of movement. The vibration report gives an indication of how much each employee has been subjected to, in reference to applicable EU standards and gives invaluable tools for both management and the operators to become proactive.

5. Library – consists of operator manuals, workshop manuals, parts lists, machine handling movies and tutorials.

For more information on Husqvarna Fleet Services,

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About Husqvarna 

Husqvarna is a part of Husqvarna Group, the world’s largest producer of outdoor power products including robotic lawn mowers, garden tractors, chainsaws and trimmers. The Group is also the European leader in consumer watering products and one of the world leaders in cutting equipment and diamond tools for the construction and stone industries. The Group’s products and solutions are sold via dealers and retailers to both consumers and professional users in more than 100 countries. Net sales in 2013 amounted to SEK 30 billion, and the Group had 14,000 employees on average in more than 40 countries.