Connected Cars – The Future Standard?0 May 23, 2014 at 3:51 pm by Catherine Smola
Data standards drive efficiency in the broker distribution channel, but what happens when standards start to take the wheel themselves? Driverless vehicles are currently being developed by companies such as General Motors, Daimler AG, Nissan and Google, and could be a commonplace reality on our roads sooner than we think.
Many of these companies are taking the slow-and-steady approach, gradually introducing technologies that automate driving tasks such as detecting, reacting to and avoiding certain dangerous situations. An early example is OnStar, which detects collisions and contacts emergency services automatically. Other technology – such as backup sensors – can alert drivers to hidden obstacles, and some lane assist sensors will even correct steering if a vehicle drifts out of its intended lane.
A key piece of driverless technology that has yet to find mass adoption, however, is vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) communication – the ability for vehicles to communicate crucial data in a standardized way, much the same as brokers and insurers do through CSIO data standards. With standards in place, it would be possible for a vehicle to communicate with other vehicles on the road to avoid hazards before they even enter the driver’s line of sight.
The standardization of V2V communications may produce benefits for both the insurance industry and society at large. For instance, communication between vehicles could indicate a stretch of highway where drivers have a higher frequency of losing control of their vehicles. With access to standardized data collected from hundreds or thousands of vehicles, insurers and engineers can advocate for improved road design in that area even if individual drivers do not report the danger. V2V communications standards may enable the coordination of efforts between the insurance industry, highway agencies, infrastructure authorities and consumer organizations alike.
But developing the standard and ensuring that all vehicles speak the same language is a prerequisite. European standards organizations have already announced the finalization of their first, basic set of standards for V2V communications. Government and automotive organizations in North America are developing their own V2V standards as well.
The advancement of efficient, standardized V2V communications by the automotive industry is a process that can bear immensely valuable results for insurers and brokers. Through communication and collaboration, we achieve reduced risk and improved safety – a standard we can all endorse.
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