I recently reviewed a miles-driven-based auto insurance program from the Allstate Esurance subsidiary known as DriveSense. Their system revolves around a cell phone app to sense not only your miles driven but also your driving behavior. The complaint section exposed several weaknesses in the system:

The app cannot tell the difference between whether you are a passenger or a driver, in spite of many complaints and promises by Allstate to fix this.

A driver and a passenger both with the cell phone app got completely different readings regarding the driving behavior. One said, “Great driving”; the other person’s app accused the passenger of extreme braking.

Another person was penalized for speeding for zero seconds!

Another complaint said that the app reported him speeding while cruise control is engaged below the speed limit.

One person says that the app rated them high risk based on less than 3% of their trips logged with this app.

The app penalized another driver for driving in early morning hours. He worked the night shift and had no choice but to drive during this time!

Another driver was penalized for several hard braking events, which were necessary in order to avoid hitting deer.

The negative reports go on and on, including several where insurance rates actually increased while using this app because they are now an at-risk driver!

My conclusion:

The cell phone app for DriveSense extracts so much data that it is bound to come up with some sort of rationale to increase your insurance premiums!

Why not just keep it simple by using miles-driven only to adjust premium rates?

I have a pretty good idea why….

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