Advances in technology happen at an incredibly rapid pace in today's society. One of the many areas that seems to get revolutionized quite frequently has been telematics, which deals with the long range transmission information, and its application to transportation.
New developments in telematics have been changing how things are done in the transportation world, from car manufacturing to insurance to just your day-to-day commute. While many of these developments are primarily for businesses, and are meant to help them work more efficiently and make more money, some are geared towards keeping drivers safer on the road.
How Does Telematics Impact Transportation?
You are probably familiar with the “black box” that is so important after a plane crash. When a plane goes down, most of the investigation is centered around finding this device, which records everything that the plane did before the crash. Once investigators get their hands on it, the information that it provides lets them understand exactly what went wrong.
Now imagine a “black box” in your car, recording everything that you do while on the road and relaying it to other people in real time. This is a telematic device. From how fast you go to how sharply you turn to when you roll down the window, it notes everything that goes on with your car. The information that drivers provide through the telematic devices in their cars is changing how numerous industries work, sometimes on an essential level.
Who Uses Telematic Information?
Since companies began recording telematic information in vehicles, more and more industries have taken notice and gotten involved.
Carrier companies like FedEx use it to track their trucks and maximize their efficiency. Car sharing organizations use telematics to determine who used their vehicles so they can bill them accordingly. Car storage and trailer rental companies like Uhaul also tap into telematic information to track their vehicles as well. Increasingly, insurance companies are paying attention to telematics to track how safely people drive, so they can be covered appropriately.
Telematics Are Being Used to Keep Drivers Safer
Not all uses of telematic information are for purely business purposes, though. Telematics is also used to keep people safer on the roads, both in emergency and in non-emergency situations.
In an emergency, police departments have tapped into telematics to track stolen vehicles and recover other stolen property. Additionally, companies like AAA or OnStar use telematics to determine if there was an accident or a breakdown, and to send help as soon as possible.
However, one of the more interesting uses of telematics has been by car manufacturers. By taking in the large amounts of data about day-to-day driving habits that telematics provides, they can build vehicles that better protect drivers from the threats they actually face on a daily basis. Some critics have decribed the telematic movement as an invasion of privacy. However, the demonstrated increases in safety measures that the information enables are at the very least something to consider before condemning it.