Update: Samsara AOBRD Instruction Card available for download, AOBRD Inspection Card >>

In Summary

  • By default, Samsara logs hours of service as an ELD. However, the Samsara Vehicle Gateway & Mobile app can be configured to operate as an AOBRD, or Automatic On-board Recording Device
  • Per FMCSA regulations, customers may use AOBRDs through December 16, 2019, provided they were installed prior to the ELD Mandate (i.e. prior to December 18th, 2017)
  • AOBRDs need not capture engine data from the ECM, nor electronically transfer HOS logs, unlike ELDs.
  • Samsara supports mixed fleets of ELD & AOBRD devices; per FMCSA regulations, all new devices installed after December 18th must operate in ELD Mode

What is an AOBRD?

Automatic On-board Recording Devices (AOBRDs) are precursors to ELDs (Electronic Logging Devices) that automatically record of duty status changes. Like ELDs, these devices are required to automatically record driving time. However, AOBRDs may not have the same engine monitoring capabilities as ELDs.

Both devices are regulated by the FMCSA, and ELDs are the preferred device for inspection officers beginning on December 18th, 2017. Following this date, no new AOBRDs can be installed--instead, any new device installed must be an ELD.

You can read the details of the AOBRD regulations in 49 CFR 395.15 and more about the differences between AOBRDs vs. ELDs on the FMCSA website.

Samsara's AOBRD Mode

Samsara's Vehicle Gateway & Driver App can function as an AOBRD if configured by a customer on or before December 18th, 2017. When configured, a driver displaying the DOT Inspection screen will see data specific to the requirements of the AOBRD regulations, rather than those required by the ELD mandate.


Mixed ELD & AOBRD-equipped Fleets

Samsara supports fleets with one or more vehicles designated as an AOBRD and the remainder designated as an ELD. This is critical since all new devices after December 18th are required to be ELDs.

Drivers should be made aware of which vehicles are operating in AOBRD mode in order to be fully prepared in the event of an inspection. The DOT inspection screen for a driver will vary as described above depending on whether they are presently operating an AOBRD-equipped or ELD-equipped vehicle.

When in an ELD-equipped vehicle, the mobile device will display the ELD ID; in an AOBRD-equipped device, the following will be displayed:

AOBRD aobrd_bottom.png
ELD eld_botom.png

Configuring a Vehicle for AOBRD Mode

To change the operation mode of the device:

  1. Choose a vehicle from the "Fleet" tab
  2. Click the Settings gear next to the vehicle name

  3. Find the "AOBRD Mode" option and set it to "Enabled"
  4. Click "Save" to commit the update

Log Transfer in AOBRD Mode

Encrypted transfer to the FMCSA is not supported by AOBRDs. Instead, drivers may exit the DOT Inspection screen and choose the "Transfer Logs" button from the HOS screen in order to send their logs to an inspection officer at a specific e-mail address.