NASHVILLE, Tenn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Direct Auto Insurance today unveiled two new mobile device capabilities that can help customers monitor their driving habits, potentially save money on their auto insurance, and make paying their insurance premiums more convenient. The free DirectDrive™ app for iOS and Android grades users based on safe and responsible driving. In addition, a new text message payment option offers customers a simple and convenient method to pay their Direct Auto Insurance bill through their mobile phones.
The DirectDrive app allows users to easily monitor and track good driving habits. Simpler than many insurance programs that monitor driving, which often require special equipment, DirectDrive uses only a smartphone’s various sensors to measure driving behaviors such as hard stops, accelerations, and decelerations. After logging each trip, the program calculates a user’s driving score on a scale from “good” to “better” to “best” and tracks trip history over time. Based on a driver’s scores, the app then offers the user feedback on how to improve driving. In addition to learning about their driving behavior, users within Direct’s 13-state reach can compete with other users on the DirectDrive leaderboard that ranks the top drivers in each state. As users demonstrate good driving behavior, they are awarded achievements that can be unlocked to boost leaderboard points.
“Every driver, biker, pedestrian, and police officer instantly recognizes bad driving. Good driving, on the other hand, is rarely acknowledged or rewarded,” said Brian Hanrahan, Chief Actuary and the executive sponsor of the app at Direct Auto Insurance. “The DirectDrive app not only provides drivers with an objective measure of their driving performance, but also puts good driving in the spotlight through leaderboards that turn responsible driving into a competition where everyone wins.”
Users can also receive Direct Auto Insurance quotes and locate the nearest Direct Auto Insurance location through the app, while current customers can pay their bill through a secure, one-touch payment system. The DirectDrive app is available in the App Store and Google Play. Future additions to the app will enhance the leaderboard with social capabilities, allowing users to challenge friends to good driving competitions, select a list of specific users as rivals to compete against, and share scores on social networks. And to further encourage safe driving, Direct is working to offer users monetary rewards for every good mile driven.
"Direct’s commitment to its customers is evident in its every innovation, and DirectDrive, the first exclusively mobile telematics program in the U.S. that only requires a smartphone and no other devices, is no exception," said Steve McKay, CEO at DriveFactor, the telematics solution provider for DirectDrive. "With our DriveFactor cost-effective telematics solutions platform at its core, DirectDrive delivers engaging, motivating, and rewarding user experiences with high data quality."
In addition to the DirectDrive app and the recently unveiled Direct on the Spot™ (DOTS) kiosks at 18 Direct Auto Insurance locations, Direct’s use of technology to help customers save time and money also includes a new SMS payment option. Now, as long as customers have a mobile phone and a bank account, they can text in their monthly payments either one day before or up to three days after a due date without late payment fees. Direct will also send reminder texts to make sure no customer misses a pay period. This alternative payment method offers customers a flexible payment window to reduce the stress associated with rigid automatic monthly payment schedules.
“Approximately 56 percent of American adults own a smartphone, including many of our customers,” said John Mullen, President and CEO of Direct Auto Insurance. “As we continue to seek more convenient ways for our customers to make payments and lower their rates, one of the best solutions was to bring these options directly to our customers through their phones. Customers can now make payments from anywhere at any time through the DirectDrive app or a text message. And by learning more about their driving habits through the app, our drivers will be able to take steps to reduce their monthly insurance bills.”
About Direct Auto Insurance:
Direct General Corporation is an insurance holding company and, through its subsidiaries, is a leading provider of personal auto insurance, life insurance, and vehicle and accident protection plans. Direct is headquartered in Nashville, Tenn. and has more than 400 local offices in 13 states throughout the Southeast with annual revenues of over $450 million. Direct markets and sells its products and services under the Direct Auto Insurance brand through its retail store outlets, by phone through its call center and via the Internet.