State-Of-The-Art Technology Driving Safety On Our Roads - Business Media MAGS

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State-Of-The-Art Technology Driving Safety On Our Roads

SPONSORED: Without the development of GPS, telematics may not have quite evolved into what it is today...

It can be said that ‘telematics’ as a technology was (in part) originally inspired by the Soviet spacecraft, Sputnik, which was launched in 19571. The spacecraft introduced GPS technology, which in turn sparked the idea of ‘telematics’.

It wasn’t until the 1990s that GPS (Global Positioning System) technology reached a consumer market. Soon enough telematics “became the new tech toy to play with”. By the early 2000s, telematics technology gained enterprise-wide usage and has since moved into a more individual consumer space.

How telematics technology is contributing to safer road use

“For vehicles, GPS serves as a navigation service that provides data on location. Telematics takes things a step further and analyses information in ways that enable a broader range of services,” explains Head of Marketing and Technical Marketing at Discovery Insure, Precious Nduli.

“In a nutshell, fitted devices accumulate vehicle information and automatically transmit data to a tracking system. Immediate feedback is then almost instantly looped right back to the driver. This feedback would include such things as distance travelled, whether there was any speeding, aggressive driving or cell phone use. For telematics-enabled car insurance plans, improved driving behaviour dynamically influences premium structures and/or rewards based on a definitive change in  insurance risk as better drivers have fewer and less severe accidents.”

“Telematics and the encouragement of positive driving behaviours have complemented one another for some time already. These devices now offer drivers real-time feedback on how they’re handling their vehicles, or what road and traffic conditions they may encounter while on a trip. Real-time driving feedback in relation to this offers drivers the opportunity to correct themselves in the moment and thus prevent the frequency of reckless or poor driving,” she adds.

“Telematics devices are capable of becoming more sophisticated predictors of hazards and problematic circumstances. For example, we can use telematics data to detect potholes or uneven road surfaces. We plan to use this information to proactively fix potholes as part of our latest initiative, Pothole Patrol. adds Nduli.

Stay safe with state-of-the-art technology, while getting rewarded

Positive driving behaviours are integral to Discovery Insure’s Vitality Drive programme, which is underpinned by a dynamic Shared-value insurance model.

The Vitality Drive programme complements comprehensive car insurance cover with added safety features including:

  • ImpactAlert, which detects when you’ve been in an accident so that help can be dispatched to your location immediately.
  • The ability to use a smartphone as a panic button if you have an emergency in your car.
  • Access to an emergency medical service, Discovery 911.
  • A weather warning system that sends SMS notifications.

“Not only do engaged clients enjoy premium coverage and high-quality safety features, they’re also regularly rewarded for their positive participation in changing their driving behaviour, and thereby doing their bit towards achieving safer South African roads,” says Nduli.

“Engaged clients get up to 50% back in fuel cash back  every month for filling up at BP or Shell, for instance. Clients can also opt to double their fuel cash back and have them paid into a separate account. This money can then be used to pay for excess expenses if they’ve been involved in a car accident and need to submit a claim.”

Other rewards for good driving include discounted rides with Uber (up to 25% off). “Some of our rewards, such as discounts, are designed to encourage clients to sustain their positive behaviours through regular vehicle maintenance at Bosch and Tiger Wheel & Tyre.”

“Discovery Insure’s ambition of ‘Creating a nation of great drivers’ is possible with incentivised behavioural change and state-of-the-art technology evolving to achieve a common purpose. We’ve seen this evolve during the 10 years we’ve been in business and anticipate being able to offer clients impressive cutting-edge enhancements in the years to come,” she concludes.


History And Evolution Of Telematics:

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