While telematics has largely been recognized as an advantage for companies running fleet operations the world over, and the fact that insurance companies have started to both promote and incentivise the usage of dash cams for end-users, a survey published towards the end of last year still reveals some lingering doubts amongst a sizable percentage of drivers, especially in the UK, as to whether telematics really do make their life easier and their driving much safer.
According to the survey, carried out by Redtail Telematics in cooperation with YouGov, around 30% of the UK drivers interviewed still feel sceptical about telematics really being useful and delivering any benefits to drivers. In those claiming that telematics does provide advantages for drivers, it is quite significant to see that the top two reasons for getting the technology is the reduction in car insurance premiums and the potential help telematics will provide in locating the vehicle if stolen. According to the same research, less quoted reasons for getting telematics would be the invaluable evidence that could be provided in the case of an accident, the incentive to switch to a safer driving style and the higher self-awareness, for a driver, of their own driving style.
From the survey it seems clear that adopting telematics is still seen in general as advantageous for British motorists; but it is still associated with prohibitive costs that, in the minds of some, outweigh the opportunity to assess and change driving habits with technological assistance. The help the technology might provide in drawing attention to the way we drive is much more constructive than simply claiming a discount on an insurance premium, the importance of which still eludes those fixated on the more obvious ways to cut costs.
A recent research conducted by The British Insurance Brokers’ Association (BIBA) on the number of telematics policies active in the UK reports that the total number of active telematics based policies recorded in 2017 was 975,000 (almost one million). The number also showed an increase of about 30% on the figures made public in 2016. With this trend continuing, and if we only had greater awareness of how telematics could improve safety for all participants, chances are that the number of global road traffic incidents would definitely decrease, thus providing a powerful ethical incentive to acquire telematics-based insurance policies.