Link4 revealed cards in terms of the first insurance in Poland basing on driving style information. In exchange for sharing information on, among other things, compliance with speed limits, the company promises drivers a 30% discount on the policy. Is it enough for motorists to agree to interfere their privacy?
In the West, among others in the United Kingdom, Italy and France, special devices and mobile applications have been used for several years to monitor the behavior of motorists. They gained particular popularity among young people as statistically they cause more accidents and pay higher premiums for policies, and with this technology they can prove to the insurer that despite their lack of experience they are good drivers.
In short: on the basis of driving style records, an insurance company agrees to lower the premium, but if data show frequent acceleration and braking, driving at more than acceptable speeds and even driving at night – the premium is rising. In the UK, technology for assessing driver skills is offered by over a dozen insurers and is used by almost half a million drivers, whereby in the group of the youngest motorists (17-25 years old), already 10% of them have the device in their cars.
In the beginning of 2017, information on driving styles will be available in Poland. It will be introduced by Link4, which has already postponed the premiere of this solution several times. According to the latest information it will offer drivers a 30% discount in exchange for data provided by the application that has been tested for several months.
“As an insurer we want to promote a safe driving style. Our research shows that drivers who use the Link4 telematics based application drive safer, that is, they rarely exceed the allowed speed, smoothly brake and accelerate, and that means they are more secure motorists and are less dangerous on the road. From the point of view of an insurance company, their ride involves a lower risk of an accident or collision and therefore may count on lower premiums than the standard. It must be stressed that Link4 will not stigmatize more risky drivers by rising prices. They will simply pay the standard contributions.” – explains Marek Baran, spokesperson for Link4.
Although the other insurers do not brag about it officially, it is known that they are working on similar solutions. There are two basic ways to monitor the driving style. The first one is a phone application (Link4 will use NaviExpert – navigational application with a „Safe driving” function). The second one is the use of a device: mobile, plugged into an OBD diagnostic socket or a more advanced module permanently installed in a car. Advanced means, in this case, an accelerometer, which allows you to accurately measure the forces acting on a monitored vehicle with a distinction of direction. „The device is able to produce up to 100 samples per second. This allows us to assess the braking, acceleration and overstress forces that result from turning bends or lane changes. In addition, we have the opportunity to evaluate a maneuver, such as the distinction of dynamic, but smooth change of the drive direction from a nervous change. Based on all these parameters, the system determines a safe driving style factor, and the algorithm used may be different, depending on an insurance company’s preferences” – explains Cezary Ezman from Gannet Guard Systems specializing in monitoring systems.
He points out that it makes it possible to set different levels of danger for various maneuvers. For example, sudden braking will be a three times more negative phenomenon than too aggressive turning. In addition, each maneuver, depending on the overloading can be divided into categories and different levels of danger can be assigned to them. “Another important component that describes a particular driver is his compliance with speed limits. The analysis is made by comparing the instantaneous speed of a vehicle with the current speed limit at a given point on the road. As with overloads monitoring, it is possible to define different levels of danger depending on which speed limit is broken and on the value of speeding” – says expert from Gannet Guard Systems.
… from drivers’ point of view
Will you be willing to share data about your driving style? Marek Baran from Link4 points out that the research of the company shows that more than half of the drivers would agree to monitor their driving if they could safe on insurance thanks to it. He does not hide, however, that there are also motorists who are afraid of “tracking”.
According to the Insurance Guarantee Fund, nearly 40 percent of drivers in Poland are willing to install in their car – in return for lowering the price of a third party liability insurance – a solution that allows the insurer to track their driving style. The youngest, especially students and singles, are the most open (more than two thirds of them declare readiness for monitoring). However, with age, the willingness to share data on behavior on the road in exchange for insurance premiums decreases. In the circle of motorized until the age of 40, approximately 40 percent of respondents agree to it, while in older groups only about 33 percent. Acceptance for monitoring is more common among women than men (45 and 33% respectively).
“The results of our research are quite optimistic because they show that young people are open to new technologies – they have no objection to disclosing to the insurer their driving style– which, on the one hand, gives them a great opportunity to lower the price of their third party liability policy, and on the other hand improves safety on Polish roads” – says Elżbieta Wanat-Połeć, CEO of UFG.
Polish drivers, however, do not want to sell leather cheaply. Those who declare their consent to the installation of the described technology in their car are demanding a high third party liability insurance discount: more than four out of ten surveyed owners and vehicle users want in exchange a 50-percent discount in the price of a communication policy. Most drivers (46 percent) definitely do not agree to track their driving style for any discount; and only 3 percent of drivers are willing to agree to a 20% discount on a third party liability insurance.