The traditional way to assess driving behaviour is to combine quantifiable events such as acceleration, braking, swerving, cornering, etc. with data on the vehicle’s location. That’s the way usage-based insurance operates, says Bob Emmerson, a freelance writer and telecoms industry observer.

Together with policyholders’ profile and historical actuarial data it allows insurers to determine causal risk. However, when driving-data is reconciled with the external driving environment — weather, traffic density, etc. — the result is contextual driving behaviour. This is a relatively recent development that provides deeper insights into how and why people drive the way they do. It’s a more intelligent way of assessing driving behaviour.

Leading-edge UBI services are now able to stream vehicle telematics data without the hassle of physical connectors, and smartphones provide a low cost, widely available mobile platform to collect, evaluate and optimise driving behaviours that is on a par with dedicated hardware solutions. These devices combine large displays with powerful positioning, computing and storage capabilities, making them ideal candidates for contextual-aware driving applications.

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As shown in the following schematic, contextual-aware behaviour intelligence happens when driving data is transmitted to a purposeful cloud platform that employs the requisite framework of machine-learning algorithms, AI behaviour modeling and knowledge-centric analytics.

This combination of advanced IoT technologies is enabling the creation of contextual-aware, behaviour analytics platforms that combine regular UBI-type driving behaviour data with contributing external driving factors. Tourmaline Labs is an early leader in this field. The ability to harmonise event-based driving in context with the driving environment results in more meaningful driving behaviour assessments and safer driving cultures.

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That was a very quick take on an innovative development. Tourmaline’s platform has been designed to enable telematics solution providers, Auto OEMs, ride-share start-ups and insurance firms to integrate next-generation behaviour analytics into their solutions in order to improve safety, increase productivity and lower costs.

The author of this blog is Bob Emmerson, freelance writer and telecoms industry observer

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