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Really? Another story of insurance impeding progress?

February 28, 2014

Shared mobility is nearly 2 decades old- the excuses for not embracing the commercial opportunities are thin at this point.  We need more stories like that posted in GIGAOM by Lauren Hockenson to create a race to market among insurers with courage and adaptability.  Playing the “we need more data” card is legit to a point.  However, when I see stories about the Chicago Police using data to  to warn people against  the crime they are thinking about committing before it happens, or knowing what we are doing with “Big Data” for risk mitigation at get2kno, this business case becomes a fairly transparent excuse.  What if the Shared Mobility sector banded together and lobbied to have shared mobility insurance regulated under a single entity- like the FOI?  Yes, we’d see an industry uprising, but isn’t 20 years enough time to embrace?  I’m also sharing this with some folks focusing on autonomous capabilities- as a way of stepping back for a moment and asking, “If we think nearly zero progress in shared mobility insurance is the exception- just wait until we are faced with the “driver in the box”.” Shared mobility and urbanization are contributors to declining driver license rates and vehicle ownership- which ultimately forms a long tail impact on insurance.  However, as connected vehicle technologies and autonomous capabilities proliferate and converge with shared mobility- the experiences of Kodak become even more deserving among those who want to protect an insurance industry status quo.  The time to begin facing reality is now when expecting the existing insurance industry leaders to embrace new transportation models and technologies that ultimately result in a significant decline in their 100 year old, $190B, revenue stream.  Yes, new entrants, and some from the 10 to 20 companies under the top 5 will embrace- but actions can be taken to significantly reduce the friction, the cost, for those insurers who choose to lead.  

As far as shared mobility providers hoping insurance will convert into a secret strategic advantage, isn’t collaboration and cohesiveness a faster path to growth?  No single shared mobility provider is large enough to be a silver bullet for an insurer. Whomever does embrace shared mobility will want to own the entire sector.  Being more direct, such companies deserve as much for stepping up and breaking ranks.  Embrace the entities who are in your corner.  Let’s present a united front.   Competitively priced insurance, with the coverages and billing cycles you need, is a mountain too high to climb solo.  Additionally, resolving the shared mobility insurance issues represents an essential step towards solutions in autonomous vehicles.  At some point, all of us must look inward and decide- how long are we going to let a remarkably wealthy and powerful industry constrain progress?  Has the time arrived to rally the entire shared mobility user/member community?  What if every member were invited to participate in a summit, a webinar, or constructively reach out to state and federal legislators?  Imagine a single 5 hour period designated for those associated with shared mobility to call a legislator in each state, or in D.C.  These are not the questions of a critic, but in support from a team who are putting it all on the line in support of this new era of mobility.  

Guy & the entire get2kno team

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