Mobile app ecosystems have transformed the way Canadians work and play.
Many businesses have made it easier for customers to access accounts and pay for services, with some of these platforms even offering rewards through this fast-growing ‘app economy.’
Even the Auto insurance space is making an effort to modernize, and one Canadian company is leading the way.
Car insurance provider Onlia aims to shift the perception surrounding insurance with its surprisingly innovative iOS and Android app, Onlia Sense. The app features three distinct sections that accomplish this.
The main feature included in the app is that it’s designed to reward safe and distraction-free driving. Onlia Sense utilizes telematics technology that measures your vehicle’s speed and movement to analyze your driving habits. In a way, it’s like the Carrot Rewards’ now defunct app, but for your car.
The app detects how fast your car accelerates, whether you are distracted by your phone, how quickly you take corners and other information related to driving habits. Onlia Sense then gives you a score out of 100 for the trip, along with a monthly rating that averages all of your travel under one score. There are also perks for travelling specific distances.
Your score then earns you coupons, including monthly perks like $5 CAD Starbucks gift cards. Rewards are limited right now, so hopefully, Onlia expands its partner offerings in the future.
The app also provides GPS navigation, but most will likely prefer to still use Google Maps or Waze. It’s worth noting that Onlia Sense doesn’t require additional hardware, and is not linked to your auto insurance rate in any way. You don’t even need to be an Onlia customer to use this portion of the app. All that is required is an iPhone or Android smartphone to power the platform.
Onlia claims that the driving information it gathers isn’t shared with insurance companies or brokers, though it does state that it sometimes sells anonymized data to its partners. This means that while the Onlia Sense is a free app, there’s still a transaction going on behind the scenes, similar to nearly every free app.
Next, there are the app’s built-in Roadside Assistance features, delivering roadside repair and towing services directly to Onlia customers through a partnership with Sykes. The company says it offers this service 24/7, and that it features 2,400 on-call vehicles.
Roadside Assistance isn’t free though, even if you’re an Onlia insurance customer. Vehicle unlocking/key retrieval, jump-starting and fuel delivery costing a flat rate of $79 CAD. On the other hand, towing services start at $99. Onlia Roadside Assistance is available in all Canadian provinces and territories.
While not the most affordable option available, the Onlia app’s Roadside Assistance features are convenient, especially if you don’t already subscribe to similar services like CAA or Canadian Tire Roadside Assistance.
Finally, it’s also possible to get an auto insurance quote directly through the app through a relatively simple process that just takes a few minutes.
Overall, the Onlia Sense app is an impressive effort to support safe driving behaviour, in addition to being a well-designed app that’s easy to understand and navigate thanks to an intuitive user interface.
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