The world of tech moves at an incredible speed and almost every gadget we buy is connected to the Internet, capturing and gathering data aimed at improving and enhancing our lives. One such area where we are seeing an influx of connected solutions is on our roads, with the dawn of autonomous cars and an ever-growing number of connected vehicles.
We know from experience that our industry avoids rushing into adopting new technologies, preferring to take our time to make sure things are done in the right way. While getting it right is obviously vital, by not finding ways to adapt quicker we risk missing out on opportunities and failing to meet the needs of increasingly tech-savvy end users.
Most new cars coming out of the factory are already set up to connect to the Internet, whether that is because car owners want to access navigation systems, or get weather and traffic updates. With this connectivity in place, it’s also possible to collect, store and share data about the car and its driver’s habits, which means that assessing risk and pricing insurance premiums can now be done with greater accuracy than previously realised.
Thanks to this connectivity, autonomous/driverless cars can now become a reality. In the last year alone, 1.5 million vehicles in the UK were registered featuring some form of Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS). For now though, public opinion seems to be divided on whether this technology is a good or a bad thing for the safety of our roads. Nonetheless, we must be ready to embrace change and support consumers. It also gives rise to a whole load of new questions we need to be prepared to answer.
From the perspective of trying to assess risk, cars that drive themselves and talk to other vehicles on the road around them remove the human component from the equation. If we remove the potential for human error, will consumers then expect lower insurance premiums? Another question we may have to consider is that as we become less and less experienced on the road (given our vehicles are acting as chauffeurs), how well will we be able to respond should a fault occur? Only time will tell how these questions and the answers to them evolve.
Something else for us to consider is that the cost of replacing even a single sensor on these high-tech vehicles is set to be pricey. So, if repairs are set to cost a lot more, will they push insurance premiums back up?
To meet consumer demands, the industry needs to work together to find the right answers to these questions. And that can only be achieved with access to as much data as possible. The data we have at our disposal can help inform those conversations and we are excited to play a key role in the next phase of the automotive industry’s evolution.
We were recently featured on IoT Now talking about this topic. If you’d like to read more click here.