Short-Range vs. Long-Range Tachograph Download

When your company is required to have a tachograph, you will also be required to comply with the regulations regarding the deadlines for the download of data from mass memory and your drivers’ cards. Downloading the .DDD files (tachograph and driver card data) can be done in several ways, but must be carried out within the following timeframes:  

  • Tachograph mass memory data: every 90 days 
  • Driver card data: every 28 days  

In this article, we will explain the two most-used methods of tachograph data download: short-range download and long-range download.

If you do not download in time, not only do you risk penalties, but there is also the risk that old data will be overwritten by new data if the storage limit of the internal memory has been reached!

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Short-Range Tachograph Download

Downloading of data from the mass memory and driver card, and the transmission of the encrypted data to the office computer via WLAN is known as short-range download. Downloading of .DDD files is carried out from the company’s head office (or any other company premises), which also defines the download intervals. With the short-range solution, the company card does not need to be inserted in the digital tachograph and can remain in the office, since authentication is done via the wireless network. This means that the encrypted data can be downloaded on time, and stored directly in the office as required by the regulations.

Short-Range vs Long-Range Tachograph Download

Like the term says, short-range means a limited range of the wireless network. Usually, a short-range download network is installed on the company premises, so when the vehicles with tachographs enter the premises, the network starts downloading the files directly.


  • Automatic download when vehicle comes into the range of the WLAN network.
  • One-time installation of network.
  • No data transmission costs.


  • Works only within the range of the WLAN network so vehicles must drive to the network on a regular basis.
  • Difficult to troubleshoot remotely.
  • Download of driver cards can be difficult to time.
  • WLAN network needs maintenance.
  • Expensive one-time costs.

Long-Range Tachograph Download

With long-range tachograph data download, the location of the vehicle is not relevant anymore. With this solution, the download device makes use of the cellular network to transmit the data to the cloud storage or office server. The rest of the setup is almost the same as with short-range downloading: the vehicles need to be equipped with a tachograph download device, a company card must be installed into a reader to gain remote access and the data is transmitted to a secure storage.


  • 100% automatic.
  • Vehicle location is not relevant anymore.
  • Easier to meet download intervals.
  • Higher frequentie of data download possible.
  • Easy to troubleshoot remotely.
  • Lower upfront investment.


  • Monthly costs.

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