A beginners guide to telematics insurance

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When looking to take out new car insurance, there are a lot of options to consider. With a huge variety of providers and offers out there, it can be hard to know where to start and how to find the best one for you – but have you looked into telematics insurance

For someone who has just passed their test, or fits into demographics that are statistically deemed more likely to be involved in an accident – like the younger generation, for example – telematics is perfect. Sound like you? 

How about someone who has been driving for years but only actually gets behind the wheel every so often? Well, telematics collects data, monitoring your driving and personalizing your insurance policy to suit your individual driving needs. Read on to find out more! 

What is telematics insurance?

Telematics are location-based services that gathers data from telecommunications (phone lines, cables, cellular networks) and informatics (computer systems) to track driver behavior and safety. 

This could be done using a chip installed in your car’s windshield or an app on your phone. Your insurance provider might then offer discounts and rewards for safe driving, as well as being able to give you tips on how to become even safer – thus lowering your premium further. 

The idea of telematics is that it bases the price of your insurance on how you actually drive, rather than how someone of your demographic is likely to drive. 

How it works

By keeping your location services activated, your insurer will be able to use Global Positioning System (GPS) to see if you’re abiding to speed limits, not breaking too harshly, and cautiously executing maneuvers. 

What’s more, by gathering a large amount of data, telematics is able to judge whether it’s you driving, or if you’ve taken public transport. So, you need not worry if you’ve hopped in a taxi and your driver isn’t as safe as you usually are. 

The benefits of telematics

There are many other benefits of telematics insurance – the main one being that it can provide a custom policy that’s personalized specifically to you and your driving habits. 

In addition to this, thanks to the location-based services, in the unfortunate event you’re involved in a collision or break down, the technology can pinpoint exactly where you are so roadside assistance can be dispatched quickly and efficiently to you. 

Also, if you don’t drive much, telematics will pick this up and tailor your premium based on your mileage. Essentially, the less you drive, the cheaper your premium could be – as someone who puts tens of thousands of miles on their car every year has more risk of being involved in an accident than someone who only drives a quarter of this. 

However, it’s important to remember that the more you drive, the more practiced you become, also. 

FAQs

It’s natural to still have questions when considering a new car insurance policy, and with this in mind, we’ve answered a few of the most frequently asked questions below: 

What data does telematics analyze? 

Inside your phone are sensitive gyroscopic mechanisms that help to track and analyze small movements. This can detect whether your device is in your pocket, on a dashboard holder or simply on the seat next to you. 

Due to this, it’s easy to tell whether you’ve slammed on the breaks or are turning erratically. 

Thanks to this and GPS, telematics can gather all the data it needs to gain an accurate oversight of your driving safety. 

In addition, your policy might also be affected by the time of day at which you most frequently drive. If it’s generally dark, your premium might go up slightly as dark roads make it harder to see and remain safe.

How will telematics know if it’s me that’s driving?

Of course, if your insurance is measured using a chip in your windshield, you won’t have to worry about it picking up the speeding taxi driver or scary bus journey you’ve embarked on. 

But, even if the data is recorded through your phone, due to the wealth of information it will have gathered over time, your insurer will have an accurate picture of how you drive, and work with the motion sensors in your phone to work out if it’s you. 

If you’re still worried, though, you can always check on your data online or on the app, if this is provided.

Do I need to have my location services on all the time?

Perhaps the only downside if your phone battery isn’t all that great – but if the telematics are recorded through your device and not a chip installed in your vehicle, then you’ll need your location services on at all times, even when you’re not driving, so telematics can pull through all the information it needs to keep your premium as accurate and efficient as it can, to find the best deal for you.

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