While dash cam usage in the United States hasn’t quite caught on like it has in other countries, the US could soon see a big spike in usage of the device.
For most drivers, the biggest advantage of a dash cam is that they can be used for security and fraud protection in the even of an accident. In Europe however, there’s the added benefit that insurance companies actually offer discounts to drivers who use dash cams. That benefit hasn’t made its way to America yet, but insurance companies in the US will accept dashcam footage as part of a claim.
The factor that could finally spur the US to adopt dash cams on a wide scale though, could be ride sharing services like Uber and Lyft.
Speaking at the recent Consumer Electronics Show, the Cobra company sees an opportunity to ensure both driver and passenger safety. Newer dash cams have both forward and rear facing cameras, so not only is the action outside recorded in the even of an accident, but what’s going on inside the car is documented as well.
For drivers, this brings a peace of mind that they’ll be protected from unruly passengers. For riders, it provides a little more security to help with the uneasiness that goes along with getting in a stranger’s vehicle.
As dash cam usage becomes more prevalent (take at look at our list of the best dash cams), it will be interesting to see if any insurance companies offer a discount for having one. For now, their mantra seems to be that they don’t actually help people become better drivers, so there’s no incentive to drop their prices for owning one.
But as more data comes in, what’s clear is that dash cams do help insurance companies settle cases more quickly and reliably. And if that trend increases, it could be just enough to encourage insurance companies to offer a price break.