5 min read
Updated on Aug 07, 2023
Every car owner in India is mandated by law to purchase car insurance before they can start using their vehicle on the road. This is of course done in the safety and interest of the owner and driver of the car. Now, while buying a car insurance policy, your insurer offers you a certain premium rate that you’re required to pay on a regular basis. In return, the insurance company provides you the benefit of financial protection against any damage caused to the vehicle or injury caused to you.
While these premium rates are nearly standard (with slight variations from one insurer to another), the insurance industry in India is soon catching pace with technological innovations to reform this trend. Telematics solutions are a positive step in this direction. Here we discuss in detail what telematics means and how it can be useful to a policyholder in terms of car insurance premium.
In literal terms, telematics refers to that part of computing technology that facilitates transfer of digital data and information over long distances. This modern technology is now being adapted by the insurance sector across the world, with India soon catching pace as well. Insurance companies are using telematics solutions to digitally track and monitor the route taken by a vehicle (by way of GPS devices) as well as the distance traveled.
In addition, with the help of telematics, the mileage of a car and the condition of its engine can also be accurately determined. With the help of this data, insurers can then decide premium rates for car insurance policyholders based on the total distance covered by their car. It is by far regarded as one of the most accurate measures of determining premiums for vehicle insurance.
With regard to car or motor insurance, telematics solutions is often referred to as usage-based insurance. This simply implies that insurance premiums payable by car owners would be directly proportional to the usage of their respective cars, i.e., the distance traveled by the vehicle.
This is a more accurate way of finding out premium rates for different car owners and is being considered as a welcome move by a lot of car insurance policyholders. In order to determine the exact usage of the car and its components, insurance companies make use of digital tracking and monitoring devices called telematics devices. They are installed in the car to record readings of the total distance covered, the route taken, the pattern of driving followed, and more.
In some cases, the insurer may install GPS trackers in place of a telematics device (which tends to serve the same purpose). Alternatively, policyholders can also be asked to download a mobile app that helps track the movement of the car.
Based on the readings collected, the insurance company can then decide on an insurance slab for the car owner or policyholder. Note that since the premium rate is directly in proportion to the car’s total distance covered, any increase in the said distance (mentioned in the policy) would require the policyholder to upgrade the insurance policy to one which has a higher distance limit.
Adapting to newer and more advanced technological trends is always in favor of anyone who uses it. The same rule applies to the insurance sector as well where telematics is fast picking up. These digital solutions have several benefits not just for the insured but also the insurer. Let’s look at some of them here.
Telematics seems to be one of the best things that has happened in the insurance sector, holding several benefits both for the policyholders and the insurer (as detailed above). With the introduction of telematics, the motor insurance industry seems to be progressing towards a complete transformation in the following ways:
Telematics is a widely popular system followed in most western countries; however, India is still warming up to the multiple benefits that this technology has to offer. With the slow but sure introduction of telematics solutions in the insurance industry in India, the sector is sure to witness a huge transformation in the way it operates.
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