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Techie to Go
Out in the middle of nowhere, late at night, a driver settles in with his laptop to plan out his next day’s route before getting some much-needed shuteye. But there’s no rest for the weary — he can’t get into email. The keys don’t respond, no matter how hard he hits them. The screen is lit up but completely frozen.
He got his truck safely to his destination, but his computer? It crashed.
“The computer is a lifeline for drivers now,” says Austin Whitten, president of Geeks in Route, a computer repair company that is reaching out to the nation’s truck drivers. “I had a buddy who’s a customer call to tell me that his system was down completely. He was tearing his hair out, telling me that he couldn’t do anything without the computer. He didn’t even know where he was supposed to go next.”
Whitten thought that other drivers might need his company’s help. Though his main business was helping companies or individuals with home computers, he realized that, with computer techs all across the country, his company was set up to help drivers in need.
“They can call us and first we attempt to fix their computer remotely,” he says. “But if they don’t have a high-speed connection that allows us to do that, we will have a tech meet them along their route. So when the driver stops to have dinner or shower, our tech will meet them at that spot to do the repairs.”
The same routine follows if parts are needed. “These guys can’t afford to be down for a day,” says Whitten. “They don’t know who’s out there doing computer repair when they are on the road. With us, they call our toll-free number and we arrange the routing.”