image-red-carpetWho are you wearing? That is the famous question reporters often ask celebrities as they traverse the red carpet on the way to their awards shows. But soon that might not be a question just asked of New Jersey stars like Jon Bon Jovi, Eli Manning and others, but of you and me as well. Why? Well in less than a generation, technology and computing has moved from the computer room to the desktop, to the laptop, to the phone, to the car, to the wristwatch, to the eyeglass and soon…on almost anything you wear. What industry is leading the charge in that shift to wearable technology? Is it the fashion industry or the entertainment industry? Nope, the answer is as peculiar and surprising as a New Jersey jug handle is to an out-of-state visitor. The answer is…the insurance industry!

Surprised? Well, think about it. Insurance is essentially all about pricing risks. To do that optimally, you need good data. With wearable technology and the “Internet of things” providing real-time information on how fast or how far a car is driven or how often blood pressure spikes within an individual, insurers can develop better risk models and price policies more accurately and maybe lower for the right people. That is all the incentive insurers need to get behind this trend. To entice you to wear or use such devices, they will be offering price discounts for behavior and activities that lower risk.

Until now, insurance has not been an industry that has been revolutionized by the advances in computer technology and internet access. Travel, book selling, auto buying, retail, trading, mobile banking and even grocery shopping have been transformed. Now is the time for those cool dudes in the insurance industry to channel their inner geek and get in on the technology revolution sweeping across the industry.

With technology advancements, you can expect in the very near future to be able to make an auto insurance claim in real time at the scene of an accident. Take a picture with your smartphone using an app provided by your carrier. Have confidence that your onboard data-gathering device has already captured and sent information to your insurer proving that you were stopped when that nice old lady (on her way to Kings to buy potato salad) hit you in the intersection. Send the picture and then you can be on your way.

Privacy issues aside, health apps on a smart phone, personal fitness bands on your wrist, data-gathering devices in your car, home and even in your backyard, all capturing and delivering data directly to your insurance carrier can provide you and your insurance company a host of benefits.

So who are you wearing?

Let IT Radix help you prepare for your grand entrance and your walk down the IT red carpet.

First published in our July 2015 IT Radix Resource newsletter