New technology has made it possible to create truly individual insurance products. Telematics devices, including fitness gadgets that can not only track the movement of customers, but also to remove information about their health and lifestyle. However, in the way of mass adoption of these technologies, there are a number of obstacles.
Telematics is actively gaining market insurance. The most impressive results can boast of insurers from North America: according to the consulting firm Strategy Meets Action, today every third insurance company from this region sells avtostroenie products, using telematics device. Other developed countries are no exception. Used data technology and instrumentation not only in the field of auto insurance. Canadian John Hancock Life Insurance Company last fall announced that it will sell only so-called interactive policies, with the design which users will share with the company data in exchange for discounts. Interactivity implies attending courses on healthy eating, regular meetings with the doctor and the use of gadgets that monitor various medical parameters. Consumers encourage not only discounts on insurance programs, but and free all fitness trackers from leading manufacturers. The size of discounts on your insurance is directly linked to achieve clients results. For example, an Apple Watch if the customer is obliged daily to do at least 10 thousand steps.
In the company Beam Technologies has gone a step further and offer so-called “smart” toothbrushes: if the client brushes his teeth at least two minutes a day, he gets a free consumables such brushes, as well as discounts on insurance premiums.
Telematics allows you to create new insurance products, tying them to a credit card, loyalty programs, and so forth — create software designers there are many.
The fashion for fitness gadgets, of course, did not start due to insurers over the last four years, the growth in demand for such devices in Europe and North America amounted to 330%. According to PYMNTS, in 2017 in the world has sold 40 million fitness trackers and 71 million “smart” hours, this market is growing at a record pace. Advocates of a healthy lifestyle are the Millennials — 54% of the interviewed representatives of this generation have already bought these devices or intend to do, 46% are interested in the data about the state of his health in numbers.
We are talking about the fact that more and more people worldwide begin to “confess” a healthy lifestyle. The insurers have it on hand. As said in the same John Hancock, their goal is to make people less sick with heart disease and diabetes. According to the company, its customers live on 13-21 years longer than clients of other insurance companies. Then, as they say, desire and the other are the same, everybody wins in the Win-Win principle.
Unfortunately, we cannot say that a future that “is already here”, is really straightforward. Pioneers in the application of “smart” insurance products criticized from all sides. So, the defenders of the security of personal data pose the question: who else but the insurance companies will be able to access this information? Consumer advocates, insurers suspect that those using the new technologies carried out the segregation of the customer base by working only with only healthy customers and infringing the rights of others.
Physicians are rightly interested in how the current commercial gadgets can give a correct picture of health in the medical sense. For example, we are talking about the fact that in most bracelets there is only one point of contact, while in the professional medical procedures used by at least ten points. There are questions about what constitutes a healthy lifestyle: is it enough for you to give up bad habits, or necessary, for example, to do a morning jog? As you know, the interpretation can be quite different and, therefore, increases the risk of manipulation.
Finally, the important factor of price. Now the cost of the fitness bracelets from a wide range of functions is the same as the new smartphones average price category, and it is obvious that the “smarter” the device, the more expensive it is. That is the ultimate cost of the policy could significantly increase, which deters potential customers. This is especially true in Russia on the background of low incomes of the vast majority of citizens and in the undeveloped insurance culture. For our market, the priority is still the factor of availability of insurance services greatly outweighs the values that carry new technologies, however innovative they may be.
All the above difficulties do not pose insurmountable barriers to the development of “smart” insurance products. On the contrary, it is their continuous improvement. After all, that the future of personalized insurance policies, nobody argues. However, the pioneers in the introduction of these technologies will have to invest not only in innovative solutions, but also in promoting a healthy lifestyle.
The opinion of the author may not coincide with ideas of editorial
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