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New Maps April 2022

Today we have updated the map data and traffic flow data on our servers.

Changes in the road network and driving speeds may affect driving times between customers, so we recalculated them for you in portatour®. Some users might notice the change when updating the schedule next time.

In addition, when displaying maps in portatour®, the loading times might take a little longer since the map details need to be downloaded to your device again.

Major March 2022 update

This update is one of the most comprehensive in the history of portatour®, with new features that many users have been waiting for.

To read details about the new features, scroll down or use the following links:

We wish you much success with using the new features and are looking forward to your feedback at feedback@portatour.com.

Showing current traffic on the map

To display the current traffic on the map, proceed as follows:

  • Open the map by clicking Customers > Map.
  • Click the “Current traffic” button with the car icon in the upper right corner.

The current traffic situation will now update automatically every minute until you click the button again to turn off the traffic display or exit the map.

The schedule now takes current traffic conditions into account

Are you interested in what effect the current traffic situation has on the travel times in your schedule? That information is now available in portatour®.

Open your schedule and click the Current Traffic button at the top (or “More > Current Traffic” on small devices).

For each trip in the day displayed, the travel time is calculated considering the current traffic situation and the time difference with regard to the planned travel time is shown:

  • If the planned travel time is currently realistic or would even be faster now, the line is highlighted in green.
  • If traffic is currently slower than what is planned, but the additional time required is still less than 10 minutes, the line is highlighted in yellow.
  • If traffic is currently significantly slower than what is planned and the additional time required would be more than 10 minutes, the line is highlighted in red.

Note that this represents a snapshot. The further the journey is in the future, the less informative the current traffic is for it.

If the additional time required is already expected on your next drive, we recommend updating the schedule to take current traffic into account.

Effect of the current traffic situation on the driving routes

Are you interested in what effect the current traffic situation has on the specific routes in your schedule? That information is also now available in portatour®.

Open your schedule and click the Map button at the top (or click “More > Map” for small devices). You will now see the map with the planned driving routes of the selected day.

Now additionally click on the “Current traffic” header with the car symbol in the upper right corner. For each journey of the day displayed, portatour® checks whether there would be a faster alternative route when taking the current traffic situation into account. If so, it will be displayed in blue, while the originally planned journey is dashed.

When you click a route on the map, you will see the time difference from the originally planned travel time in the bar at the bottom.

New schedule takes current traffic conditions into account

By default, portatour® uses a traffic forecast based on historical traffic flow data for route planning.

With this new feature, if desired, the current traffic situation can now also be included in the schedule calculation the first trip, provided that it starts within the next 15 minutes.

Proceed as follows:

    • Open the Schedule.
    • Click Update Schedule.
    • You will be asked if the current traffic should be taken into account for the first trip.
    • Click Current Traffic.

Taking the current traffic situation into account not only has an impact on the forecasted travel time, but also affects the automatic selection of the first customer in the schedule. Customers for whom there is a loss of time on the driving route, despite the consideration of alternative routes, are less likely to be scheduled as the first visit.

Updating a schedule takes longer when taking current traffic into account due to the increased calculation effort. Depending on the number of customers, up to 5 seconds more may be required.

You can see that current traffic has been taken into account in the schedule by means of the additional text in the line of the first trip:

If you do not wish to be asked whether portatour® should take the current traffic into account every time the schedule is updated, configure it accordingly in the schedule’s Scheduling Parameters:

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is the current traffic only taken into account for the first trip in the schedule? And only if it starts within the next 15 minutes?

The current traffic situation is always a snapshot that is subject to change at short notice. Think of a traffic jam that dissipates after an hour.

Or if you calculate a schedule on a Sunday that does not start until Monday, then it does not make sense to use the current traffic pattern of low-traffic Sunday for the travel time forecast for high-traffic Monday.

For trips in the schedule that are further in the future, it makes more sense to forecast traffic based on historical traffic flow data as before.

Should I update the schedule before starting each trip to reflect current traffic?

No. Instead, use the Current traffic button (or on small devices, click “More > Current Traffic”) above the schedule. This will quickly tell you if there are any unexpected delays for the planned trip. Only if these delays are no longer acceptable to you, update the schedule to potentially have other customers suggested.

When should I turn off consideration of current traffic conditions?

If you’re traveling in a region where traffic is hardly a factor or is mostly constant, turning off this new feature will speed up schedule calculation.

Additional changes in the March 2022 update for all users

Integration of the lower function bar into the upper function bar

On all pages, the buttons that were previously in the function bar at the bottom of the page have been moved to the top function bar. This has the advantage of now having only one function bar, so it is no longer necessary to scroll down.

Usually, rarely used functions are grouped under the righthand button More. Likewise, on narrow smartphones, some functions are moved under More for space reasons.

Example schedule

Click More.

Change in the display of menus

The menus have been modernized for better readability. See the following before/after comparison:

 

Support for “Petal Maps” as navigation app

The navigation app “Petal Maps”, which is mainly used on Huawei smartphones, is now directly supported by portatour®. If you have this app installed on your smartphone and want to start it automatically when you click Navigation, proceed as follows:

  • Open the Options in the main menu.
  • Click Program Settings.
  • In the GPS Navigation section, switch to Petal Maps.
  • Click Save.

Map: Default display of driving routes instead of beelines

When you display newly calculated schedules on the map, the actual driving routes are now displayed by default instead of simplified beelines.

The cogwheel button at the top right of the map still allows switching between driving routes and beelines.

New “Company” and “User Groups” workspaces

This update is intended for administrators and supervisors.

Have you made at least one of the following requests to portatour® in the past?

  • Quick search for customers across multiple user accounts
  • Displaying customers of multiple users on the map at the same time
  • Mass editing multiple users’ customers in a single step

Yes? Then you will surely appreciate the new “Company” and “User Groups” workspaces.

In portatour® you will find the new workspace bar at the top. It shows the name of your company and the workspace you are currently in. An administrator can change the company display name in the company options in the “Company” section under “Program Settings”.

The choice of workspace determines from which user or users you can currently see and edit data.

There are four types of workspaces:

  • Your personal workspace . You will only see your own customers, if indeed you have any in portatour®. Otherwise your personal workspace is limited to your personal settings.
  • The workspace of one other user. You will see only the customers of the selected user.
  • New: The workspace of the whole company. You can see the customers of all the users in your company that you have access to.
  • New: The workspace of one user group. You can see the customers of those users who belong to the selected user group.

Switching workspaces

To switch workspaces, click the white selection field in the workspace bar. A selection window with a quick search function opens:

You will find all the workspaces listed to which you have access.

Clicking on a list entry switches to this workspace. To open the workspace in a new browser window, click the arrow icon on the right. This allows you to open several workspaces in parallel.

In the workspace bar you will also find two buttons to quickly switch to the company workspace (right button) or to your personal workspace (left button) with one click:

When switching workspaces, portatour® remains on the displayed page with the current settings, provided that this page or setting is possible in the new workspace. Example: If you are currently viewing the customer list with extended search for “overdue customers” in the workspace of user A and then switch to the workspace of user B, you will also land on the customer list with the overdue customers there.

The new “Company” workspace

In this workspace you have access to three main menu items:

  • Users: You will find the familiar user administration here. Previously, access to it was via the options of an administrator and/or supervisor.
  • Customers: You will find the new company-wide customer list and customer search here.
  • Options: You will find the known company-wide options here. Previously, access to it was via the options of an administrator.

The new user group workspace

This workspace behaves analogously to the company workspace, with the difference that the data is not loaded from all user accounts, but rather only from the users of the respective user group.

Note: User group workspaces are only available if your company has 10 or more portatour® licenses. User groups have to be switched on by your administrator in the company options.

Global customer list and customer search

This update is intended for administrators and supervisors.

When you open the customer list in the workspace of the company or a user group, the customers from the corresponding user accounts are loaded and displayed in a common list.

Note: Company-wide access to customers is only available if the company account has a maximum of 50 user accounts. If you have more users, use the workspaces of user groups with a maximum of 50 users to access customers across users.

In the global customer list, almost all the functions you already know from the customer list of a single user are available, e.g. quick search, extended search, saved searches, map view, selection mode and mass editing.

Specifics and differences:

  • The right column additionally shows the name of the user in whose account the customer resides.
  • If you now open the customer detail page, portatour® will automatically switch to the workspace of the user in question. The back button takes you back to the company workspace.
  • It is not possible to create a new customer in the company workspace. Switch to the workspace of the user where the customer will reside to create the customer there.
  • Filters for users and user groups are available in the extended search.

Note: The customer list represents a maximum of the first 3,000 entries. If necessary, use the search or sort function if the desired customers are not present in it.

Displaying customers of multiple users on the map at the same time

This update is intended for administrators and supervisors.

Previously, you could only display the customers of a single user on the map. As of now this is possible for customers of multiple users at the same time.

Proceed as follows:

  • Switch to the workspace of the company or a specific user group.
  • In the main menu, click Customers.
  • Optional: use the search function to filter customers.
  • Click the map icon above the customer list.

To color customers by user, click the cogwheel and change Color to User – Name.

This will provide you a good overview of the territories.

Note: This may take a few seconds to display depending on the number of customers, the performance of your device and your internet bandwidth.

To hide a user’s customers completely, click the eye symbol next to the user in the legend window. Clicking again will display those customers again.

Clicking a customer icon on the map displays the user in question in the information bubble at the bottom. Opening the customer detail view automatically switches to the user’s workspace.

Tip for manual territory splitting: The selection mode in combination with the lasso and mass editing can be used, for example, to transfer the customers of several users to one specific user in the event of overlapping territories. Be careful though, especially if you have configured automated data exchange via the portatour® API.

Mass editing multiple users’ customers in a single step

This update is intended for administrators and supervisors.

Previously, you could only edit the customers of one single user at a time. As of now, it is possible to edit the customers of several users at the same time in a single step.

Important Note: Perform such mass edits only when necessary and very carefully. If the data of many users is affected, large data loss or significant recovery effort may result from erroneous mass edits.

Proceed as follows:

  • Switch to the workspace of the company or a specific user group.
  • In the main menu, click Customers.
  • To filter the customers you wish to edit, use the Extended Search.
  • Review the list and ensure that these are the actual customers you wish to edit.
  • Click the Edit all X button at the end of the list. The mass editing window opens.

  • The number of affected customer records and the number of affected users are displayed. Check this carefully! Proceed only if these numbers are plausible!
  • Perform the desired mass edit.
  • Depending on the number of customers and users affected, the process may take several seconds. A restore point is created in each of the affected user accounts.