Car insurance app could cut cost for drivers by 50pc

19 Jun 2012

Student driver Aisling Dinsmore with Julie Gibbons from Autoline Insurance Group and Richard Jelbert from MyDrive Solutions

Autoline Insurance Group has launched a smartphone app that monitors drivers and calculates premiums based on their performances, allowing good drivers to make savings of up to 50pc.

The Northern Ireland broker is the first in the UK to introduce an app to calculate car insurance in this way and is targeting the product at young drivers who need to make savings.

Using technology provided by MyDrive Solutions, the Android app tracks users’ driving patterns by recording data second-by-second and contextualising this in relation to the underlying road network. This creates a true and fair picture of a driver’s behaviour in order to accurately calculate the risk that each driver presents.

With the data MyDrive captures, the app will be able to assess driver profiles against data gathered from the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents and drivers will be charged based on their skill rather than other factors, such as location or gender.

“We are an insurance broker so it is our job to try to get the best deal for our customers,” said Michael Blaney, managing director of Autoline Insurance Group. “This is a voluntary option with immediate savings of up to 40pc on current premiums and potential for up to 50pc with a good driving score.”

There are other benefits to calculating premiums in this way, as noted by Autoline’s operations director Julie Gibbons: “We will actively be encouraging customers to seek a better driving score which should cut the number of accidents on our roads and hopefully have a positive impact on insurance premiums for everyone if the result is a smaller number of claims in the region.”

So far, the app is only available for Android phones, as research has shown that this is the type of phone Autoline’s target market for the app – student drivers – are most likely to use. That said, the app is not exclusive to this demographic and is available for all motorists, with BlackBerry and iPhone versions expected later in the summer.

Elaine Burke is the host of For Tech’s Sake, a co-production from Silicon Republic and The HeadStuff Podcast Network. She was previously the editor of Silicon Republic.