Telematics is an important part of the auto industry. Tracking cars through geolocation has eventually shifted to recording the roads and the drivers’ actions behind the wheel. This information helps those in the auto industry to develop better techniques for being on the road.
What exactly are the specifics of telematics, though? What are the products that spur these innovations forward? One of the most influential is the insurance industry encouraging apps and devices that record driver actions and look for trends over time.
For starters, what is a SmartRide device? This is Nationwide’s specific device for their company. We’ll talk about how SmartRide and similar items are changing the safety and the habits of those who drive and buy auto insurance.
We’ll also see if this insistence on using tech to improve driving is also being used to enhance roads. What is the government doing to get in on this stuff? You’d hope telematics is always used for good, but that might not be true.
How do driving devices work for insurance customers?
Companies like Nationwide are using SmartRide and similar devices because they track your driving habits. This benefits both parties. The company is at less risk if they see that their drivers use good habits on the road. This means the device tracks average speed, brake times, and how often you are on the road at night.
The customer gets the benefit of cheaper insurance rates through discounts. They become better drivers because they pay attention to their safety measures. This is an example of how saving money is often at the forefront of our decisions, but the byproduct of those decisions is even more important.
This is especially important if you are driving a vehicle that is harder to maintain safety in, like a large pickup truck or a classic, customized 1967 Chevy Camaro. These vehicles don’t have as many safety features as others, so keeping track of your driving behavior is even more important.
How else is driver behavior tracked?
GPS has been the most popular way to track where a vehicle is located for quite some time now. When it comes to single drivers, there isn’t much more used than this technology. Many companies have invested in more advanced tracking techniques for cars that are part of a fleet.
This is because companies with drivers want to know how much money is being spent on their fleets. They can now track things like start and stop times and the amount of gas spent on idling. These are all extra costs that couldn’t be measured in the past.
When it comes to public safety, the government has been able to track things like what roads are the most dangerous using telematics. They can see the speeds that people are going and take pictures of drivers going over the speed limit or passing through a red light, even when there are no police in the area.
What will happen with the future of telematics?
Telematics should always be used to help drivers and government officials make better decisions related to driving and staying safe on the road. Sometimes drivers feel like the methods being used by telematics are simply to fill ticket quotas in areas where it takes work to do so.
Officials need to always make it clear that there is a good purpose behind the rules and advancements. Otherwise, it feels like they are getting spied on for no good reason.
Preventing fender benders and not hitting pedestrians in school zones is vital. Putting an arbitrary speed limit in an area without a good reason is not as important.
Technology will continue to allow companies and organizations to research driver behavior, road conditions, and other similar matters. They will be able to predict what the road quality will look like based on what type of cars travel on it and the weather conditions of the roads.
When you mix all these elements, you create a safe environment for drivers built on trust and innovation.
Shawn Laib writes and researches for the insurance comparison site, ExpertInsuranceReviews.com. He wants to help drivers understand the purpose of innovations in the industry that will help customers and manufacturers build a safer experience.