Following on from the introduction of Hum last year – a device which turns older cars into connected cars – Verizon has added location-based features specifically targeting teen driver and their parents.
The new additions to Hum will allow people – particularly parents – to have real-time monitoring of vehicle location, speed and activity.
Michael Maddux, director of product development at Verizon Telematics, said of the development that:
“When we launched Hum last year, the biggest need we wanted to satisfy was to give consumers peace of mind by focusing on offering more safety and security features.”
He added that the feedback Verizon had received from around one third of Hum’s customers was that they wanted additional features like geofencing.
The geofencing feature allows people to set boundary and speed alerts. Parents of a teen driver, for example, could set up an alert if their teen drives past a set distance or if a set speed is exceeded. Alerts are sent via the app, a SMS message or email.
The features also allow subscribers to the Hum service to see vehicle location and direction, as well as driving history..
Hum was first announced in August last year and it is comparable to OnStar for cars that do not offer such a service.
It’s a small device that reads the car’s onboard diagnostic port, and can make nearly any car made after 1996 a connected car. Verizon says the device is easily installed by consumers who then subscribe to the service associated with it and download an app via Google Play or Apple’s App Store.
When the product was first rolled out, features included diagnostics, roadside and emergency assistance, as well as consultations with mechanics. It also featured maintenance reminders, parking assistance, incident alerts and emergency assistance and stolen vehicle location assistance.