Tracking Gadgets: How Plug-In Devices Affect Your Auto Insurance Rates

We’d all like to save a little bit on our auto insurance rates. Some savings, however, come with an interesting trade-off. Certain things like safety devices, driver training, and even some memberships can get you auto insurance discounts. What if you could exchange some vital data about your driving habits for even more off your monthly bill? Some major auto insurers are now offering this option with automotive plug-in devices.


Learn how plug-in devices could affect your auto insurance rates.

Auto Insurance Tracking Devices

Some major auto insurers, such as Progressive, are now encouraging consumers to install a plug-in device in their vehicles to share key data. The device plugs into your car’s diagnostic port and reports data back to the insurance company via a wireless connection.

Data about your driving habits is collected, including such things as your speed, acceleration, hard braking, and time of day on the road. In some cases, this data could get you a reduction in your auto insurance rates. In others, however, you might see the opposite effect.

Plug-In Devices and Your Auto Insurance Rates

This data collected from plug-in devices is paired with other statistics about traffic crashes to assess whether or not you should be eligible for an adjustment in your auto insurance rates. For example, Progressive has determined that driving one mile at 2 a.m. is four to five times riskier than driving the same distance at 7 a.m.

Progressive also tracks hard braking, which it defines as a reduction in speed of 7 miles per hour in a second. In their analysis of 12 billion miles of plug-in device data, the company determined that customers who hard brake more than eight times in 500 miles are 73% more likely to be involved in an accident than someone who doesn’t exhibit this behavior.

Whether or not you’ll receive a discount on your auto insurance rates with one of these devices depends on your driving habits. If you’re a cautious driver who doesn’t have a long commute and doesn’t frequent the roads at night, this might be an excellent source of savings.

If you don’t like the idea of “big brother” knowing your every move, this may not be the solution for you. Also, in some cases your rates could go up if you’re a terrible driver. Remember, you’re plugging a device into your vehicle that is relaying data about your exact behavior on the roads.


There are several ways besides plug-in devices to save money on car insurance.

Auto Insurance Discounts

If you’d prefer not to share your driving data, you’re not alone. Of the 1.4 million drivers who try Progressive’s program, only about one-third of new customers opt in. There are other ways to save money on your auto insurance rates. Among these are by having anti-theft devices installed on your car and being a good driver. You might also be eligible for multiple car discounts, group discounts, and student or mature driver discounts. Contact us today to discuss your auto insurance options or to learn about our insurance discounts.


The information in this article was obtained from various sources. This content is offered for educational purposes only and does not represent contractual agreements, nor is it intended to replace manuals or instructions provided by the manufacturer or the advice of a qualified professional. The definitions, terms and coverage in a given policy may be different than those suggested here and such policy will be governed by the language contained therein. No warranty or appropriateness for a specific purpose is expressed or implied.

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