Representing the next generation of driver safety technology, Theo, the world’s first connected car service delivered by a professionally fitted video camera enabled device has launched to help shift the balance of power between drivers and their insurers. Leveraging AWS technology and powered through a professionally installed video camera enabled device, Theo will use ADAS, AI powered Intelligent Voice, video footage and Telematics to support motorists in real-time.
Theo has been created by ThingCo, a top 100 Insurtech founded in 2018 by Mike Brockman, the former CEO of insurethebox and a pioneer of data and technology to improve road safety.
Mike Brockman, CEO of ThingCo, said: “At ThingCo we are on a mission through Theo, to empower drivers through their driving data. That starts with giving them the tools to make their driving safer through state of the art road safety technology – ADAS, Telematics, AI powered intelligent voice and video footage.
“But what makes Theo fundamentally different from any technology offered by an insurer or motor manufacturer is that we will act completely in the interests of the driver. We will support them if they have a claim, with the customer’s permission utilise the evidence from Theo to prove their innocence and in the future we will give them access to competitive insurance based on their driving data. In essence, we will have their back.”
Offering drivers a combination of technology not offered in even the newest vehicles on the road, Theo incorporates a high definition camera with night time vision, an Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS) to warn of lane departures and proximity to other vehicles, plus telematics technology to provide feedback on driving behaviour.
In a collision, rather than rely on video footage alone, a crash algorithm will kick in, send a voice message to the customer using Amazon Lex technology to confirm if there has been an accident, while the telematics data and video footage will validate the circumstances of the accident. Theo will also offer to guide customers through the claims process, assisting, where possible, with the provision of a hire vehicle, repair and legal services.
Theo’s AI capabilities will also alert drivers to hazards such as when approaching the vehicle in front too quickly and as the service develops, warnings of accident black spots will be offered. This will be particularly valuable for inexperienced drivers and those less confident at the wheel, helping to avert some of the most common causes of road collisions.
Mike Brockman concludes: “Using the Theo app, customers can track their driving behaviour, plan and review their trips, manage insurance claims, receive rewards and incentives and, they will soon be able to share their driving score, through a comparison tool on the Theo app, for insurance quotes. And this is just the start, ThingCo’s mission is to put motorists of all ages and experience in greater control of their safety, their insurance, their claims experience, through their driving data.”
Insurance Edge Comment;
As we have said many times in the past, the old way of assessing car insurance risk – and premiums – via a postcode, driver occupation and NCD is ridiculously old hat. Driving style, time of day, commuting route hazards, driver response to road conditions – these are the factors that play a huge part in either having, or avoiding, an accident.
ThingCo are really onto something here and other insurers in the car and van sector need to raise their game, by offering genuinely big discounts for those drivers willing to invest in the latest technology assistance. This is the future of car insurance; premiums driven by detailed patterns of behaviour and time-stamped, unarguable evidence sent as part of the FNOL/claims process.
That automated, machine captured evidence will streamline the claims sector, and cut costs for the insurance industry as settlements get quicker and cheaper. Another bonus is that court cases will diminish in number, as irrefutable evidence by video becomes the norm.
Say goodbye to endless form-filling, comedy drawings and blurry phone photos taken at the scene. Theo is on the case baby.