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Allstate partners with Life360 app to leverage driving data

Allstate's family of businesses is joining forces with the family-oriented location-sharing app to bring consumers insights into their driving habits and personalized car insurance offers.

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Since 2010, Allstate has been collecting data directly from cars to better understand the risk that stems from certain behaviors behind the wheel.

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"A lot of people in this business will talk about 'aggressive driving' or 'hard breaking,'" Gary Hallgren, president of the Allstate subsidiary Arity, told ZDNet. "We looked, we did not find in the dictionary any definition of 'hard breaking.' A lot of people have made assumptions about what it means."

After collecting data from millions of cars, Allstate says its has unique insight into what it means.

"We know when people hard break like this, it relates to accidents like that," Hallgren explained. "And not just accidents, but the severity of accidents, and bodily injury versus property damage."

In 2016, Allstate formed Arity to provide the insurance industry -- as well as other businesses like ride-sharing companies -- that kind of data-driven insight. The business currently collects about one billion miles of driving data a month.

Now, Allstate's affiliate companies are about to get a significant spike in the amount of data they have access to, thanks to a new partnership with the family-oriented location-sharing app Life360. Founded in 2008, the Life360 platform produces over five billion miles of family driving data a month.

Life360 is joining the Answer Marketplace (run by another Allstate affiliate, Answer Financial), a new platform that will connect insurance advertisers with customers via app publishers like Life360. Through apps like Life360 -- leveraging Arity's business insights -- those insurers can offer personalized insurance offerings to customers. For instance, instead of targeting deals to certain demographic groups, an insurance company could use the marketplace to target the top 10 percent of safe drivers on Life360. The marketplace is set to launch in August.

In addition to using the marketplace to offer targeted insurance ads, Life360 can tap Arity's driver behavior models to help families understand their driving habits. For instance, parents could use Arity insights to help coach teen drivers.

It will be up to Life360 to decide exactly how it will serve up ads or new features to its users, Hallgren said.

Meanwhile, Allstate is also using its investment arm to back Life360. Allstate is not disclosing the terms of the investment. Life360, which is headquartered in San Francisco, has raised more than $90 million in venture capital. It's already growing its subscriber base for premium products like Driver Protect, a crash detection and emergency response service.

Ultimately, Hallgren said, the partnership will help Arity further its mission of "making transportation safer, smarter and more useful."

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