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Thread: Black box or Big Brother ?

  1. #1
    Regular Member Wolflinn's Avatar
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    Default Black box or Big Brother ?

    Taken from Confused.com

    Driving in 2012: New laws, telematics and more price rises?
    Lois Avery, 21 Dec, 2011

    The last year has been tough for drivers: price rises, law changes and big headlines for the car insurance industry. So will 2012 be just as eventful? We look at what’s coming up and how it might affect you.

    Gender ruling
    This is likely to be one of the big stories of 2012 with a new law that could revolutionise the insurance industry coming in at the end of the year.

    In 2011 European judges ruled that pricing insurance based on gender was illegal, and banned it.

    Now the whole insurance industry is preparing to overhaul its pricing system before the law changes in December 2012.

    Everything from car insurance to annuities will be affected, with women drivers likely to see a jump of as much as 25 per cent in motor premiums. We could see prices start to rise earlier than December as insurers attempt to smooth the transition.

    Car insurance prices
    As a result of eye-watering motor premiums, the Office for Fair Trading has announced an investigation into how the car insurance industry operates, which will continue into 2012.

    Insurance costs for every driver have soared this year. The most recent Towers Watson car insurance price index revealed a rise of 12 per cent across the UK.

    Blame for this has commonly fallen on the rise in the costs associated with personal injury claims.

    However, the increased cost of third party non-injury claims, which include credit hire replacement vehicles and third party vehicle repairs, are also factors that will be investigated.

    The OFT’s initial research suggested that it “has reasonable grounds for suspecting that there are features of the UK's private motor insurance market that restrict and distort competition”.

    The investigation is expected to last until spring 2012 and will be referred to the Competition Commission if it is thought that insurers are not acting in the best interests of Britain’s drivers.

    The Association of British Insurers (ABI) has welcomed the investigation.

    Nick Starling, ABI’s Director of General Insurance, said: "The industry has long said that there are unnecessary costs in the system and that there are inefficiencies that need to be addressed - from personal injury to credit hire to credit repair - and we are pleased that the OFT have recognised this in their report.”

    Petrol prices
    At the time of writing, the average cost of unleaded per litre was 132.52p and diesel was at 141.09p.

    The prediction is that prices will fall over the first few months of 2012 and the government announced in November that it was scrapping the planned 3p rise in fuel duty for January.

    The duty was set to rise by 3p next month and a further 2p next August, but will now only rise by 3p in August.

    Chancellor George Osborne said the average family would save £144 a year on filling up their car. But evidence suggests that the rising costs of motoring are taking their toll.

    Drivers priced off the roads
    Despite some more positive news for petrol prices, the statistics still look gloomy. Department for Transport statistics show that vehicle levels on UK roads have fallen consistently for the three years, the first time this has happened since 1949, when records began.

    In 2010, the overall motor vehicle traffic volume in Great Britain was 1.6 per cent lower than in 2009.

    This follows a 1 per cent year on year fall between 2008 and 2009, and a 0.8 per cent fall between 2007 and 2008. The high cost of motoring is blamed for the drop in the number of drivers.

    What’s in store for young drivers?
    Of all motorists, young drivers have once again been hardest hit.

    Car insurance costs in particular have soared for those aged between 17 and 25. Recent Confused.com/Towers Watson figures show that the average premium cost for a young male is now £2,432 a year.

    The gender ruling will see prices between young men and women drivers level out, with female motor premiums more likely to rise in order to close the gap.

    But overall, there isn’t much chance of a respite for the younger drivers in the UK as insurers still look to price based on risk.

    New laws to make roads safer
    A big theme for Confused.com in 2011 was road safety. It’s widely accepted that cutting accident rates, especially among young drivers, will reduce car insurance costs in the long run. As a result, 2012 could see some changes to the way we learn to drive.

    Road-safety minister Mike Penning has already announced that learners will be able to take to the motorways in 2012, but only in driving lessons and if a qualified instructor accompanies them.

    And now there are calls to ban intensive driving tests. Brake is also continuing to campaign for a graduated driving licence and the ABI is supporting a similar idea, which would see a minimum one-year learning period.

    A spokesman said: “Introducing a longer and more structured learning period may frustrate some youngsters, eager to get behind the wheel. But better this, than they become another tragic statistic.”

    However, despite moves toward radical changes, these are likely to be long-term plans and the government seems reluctant to hastily enforce anything that would unfairly penalise new drivers.

    A speed limit shake up
    Back on October 2011 the government announced its intention to review the UK motorway speed limit.

    The Department for Transport wants to raise the current 70mph to 80mph to help bring the huge proportion of drivers who currently exceed 70, back on the right side of the law. The move is also intended to get traffic moving and bring the current law into date.

    Transport Secretary at the time Phillip Hammond said: "I want to make sure that our motorway speed limit reflects the reality of modern vehicles and driving conditions, not those of 50 years ago.”

    A consultation period is underway and if the move is supported it could be enforced by 2013 with major decisions being made this year, so keep your eyes on the headlines.

    The rise of the ‘black box’
    Expect 2012 to be a big year for telematics. If you don’t know what this is, read on.

    To curb car insurance costs, some insurers are now offering drivers a ‘black box’, which will monitor in-car behaviour and driving habits, and reward good drivers with lower premiums.

    Things like speed, braking and acceleration are monitored and drivers displaying good skills can benefit. The boxes generally feed data back to a computer, which produces a report to help set premiums.

    This technology is primarily aimed at young drivers – some boxes even set a curfew and will fine out-of-hours driving – but older drivers could benefit from telematics too as premiums continue to rise.

  2. #2
    Regular Member DAVIDD88's Avatar
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    Some insurance companies make you take them when I have looked the past two years but not that I was lying about the fact of my annual mileage or don't use after 11pm at night but the fact was I did not want an insurance company fitting devices that can determine speed location and if I had an emergency during night where I needed to use car o would get a fine

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    Regular Member lee gsi's Avatar
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    Vehicle : Signum

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    My son has a box on his Corsa and it bought the insurance quote from £2700 with normal insures down to £800 with the box (But that could go up IF he drives below the standard setting).

    He is limited to only 2 passengers in the car after 6pm and 11pm and only drive occasionally after 11.

    The system works with dials and scores you how you drive:



    IMO it works VERY well as it makes him drive more to the speed limit, dont acceperate or brake too hard etc.

    You can do all of the above and stay in the yellow 'standard' area and it wont effect your premium but if you go into the red they will either ask for more money or cancel your insurance as your not driving to the condition's they set.

    My son's 'dials' are all in good or excellent and he drives like a 'normal' person.

    I now wont drive his car as I will end up lowering his score as I am in the mind set of driving to the road (Sometimes faster than the speed limit) and I like the feeling of accelerating lol.




    Ps: I know the Astra H and I 'think' the Vectra C and Signum's crash/airbag ecu stores loads of sensor data of how the car was being used for the last set amount of time incase its needed for insurance purposes.

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    Administrator Big-Pete's Avatar
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    Vehicle : Audi Q7

    Trim : S-Line Plus 245

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    Year : 2013

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    I paid over £600 for a cat5 tracker to be fitted to my car, I have web access to the info that the Tracker generates, Im fine with that as its mine, But I see black boxes used by insurance companies as a bit too far really, as we all know that insurance companies will do anything to get out of paying out on a claim if they can, and I can only see that lots of people will end up out of pocket bacause they may have been doing something as harmless as travelling at 35/36 in a 30 limit and then not get paid out! Those insurance companies that use black boxes also charge you for the Black Box, and they are not cheap from what ive seen, not too mention the lack of privacy that an insurance black box gives you..

  5. #5
    Regular Member lee gsi's Avatar
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    The one we have above was fitted free of charge and if you dont renew with them they just take it off.

    Took him about an hour to fit as he runs through the car with you before he start so you cant say this and that was working and now its not, fits it and then runs through the car again so you can see everything is still working.

  6. #6
    Regular Member DAVIDD88's Avatar
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    Still would not have one fitted would rather pay more

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    Full Member GazVXLINE170's Avatar
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    Vehicle : Insignia

    Trim : SRI VX-Line Nav

    Engine : 2.0 CDTI [170 PS]

    Year : 2015

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    More Big Brother pish. Only the honest will suffer, the continual bad drivers will always get away with it somehow.
    Insignia VX-Line Nav CDTI 170.

  8. #8
    Regular Member DAVIDD88's Avatar
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    Another insurance scandel

  9. #9
    Administrator Big-Pete's Avatar
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    Vehicle : Audi Q7

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    Quote Originally Posted by lee gsi View Post
    The one we have above was fitted free of charge and if you dont renew with them they just take it off.
    Blimey, In April i was quoted £500 for an insurance companies Black box on top of my premium, I didnt like the idea of being spied on by them, so went for a Cat 5 as its the only tracker that can cut the engine with the OK from police..

    In comparison the Cat 5 took over half a day to be fitted

  10. #10
    Regular Member lee gsi's Avatar
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    Vehicle : Signum

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    Quote Originally Posted by DAVIDD88 View Post
    Still would not have one fitted would rather pay more
    Some people cant afford too.

    If it makes you drive to the law and reduce your insurance why is that a bad thing?

    My son cant afford nearly £3k to insure a car but can afford £800

    I can see it being good for young drivers but not for everyone.


    From what I can see the Co-Op one is just a GPS/G sensor.

    Quinton Wilson review: http://www.gadgetsandgizmos.org/co-o...elemetric-box/
    Last edited by lee gsi; 3rd January 2012 at 20:26.

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