WE TOOK THE CHALLENGE
It took me exactly one trip to change my driving habits. After my first trip using the app, I was surprised to learn I braked harshly, accelerated harshly and took corners harshly. My starting score was 62 and despite getting mostly green stars on subsequent trips, the needle stood unflinchingly at 62 for at least a day.
Since then, I have been scoring somewhere between 85 and 89 – my current score is 88. This places me in the top 25% of female drivers, Gauteng motorists and drivers in South Africa who are using the app. The app can’t be more specific than that and it’s fine with me – I would love to see a score of more than 90, but life is just too short to drive any slower.
In addition, the app is not really providing me with suggestions on how I can improve – just one harsh brake or a small spurt of speeding here or there tend to keep the score in check, so the ability to significantly change one’s driving beyond a certain point seems to be minimal.
By far the most difficult thing to control was speed. While I kept to the speed limit most of the time, I often sensed some impatience from cars behind me. According to the app, drivers like me are rewarded with between R300 and R650 every month.
– Marcia Klein
Getting the Discovery Insure app took some time – no matter what I did, it just wouldn’t accept my ID number.
When I finally got it started, the app only confirmed what I already knew: I am a great driver, only prone to exceeding the speed limit here and there.
I braked harshly during only one trip. There was a broken-down taxi smack in the middle of the road without any red triangles warning motorists about it.
Acceleration: smooth. Cornering: smooth. Phone motion: none. It was very hard not to feel smug. My total driving score was 96. My only problem with the app is that it does not start up as soon as you turn on the engine.
Stealing sidelong glances at the phone on the passenger seat showed that it usually starts recording the drive midway during a trip. On one occasion, it started recording when I was opening the gate to my complex.
Perhaps it needs a button you can press when starting and ending a trip. Otherwise, it’s a great app.
– Moyagabo Maake
Adifferent side of me emerges when I get behind the steering wheel. I become impatient (because I don’t understand why people drive at 60km/h) and angry and am probably the type of driver who says rude things about other motorists under my breath. But I still consider myself a good driver.
When I first used the Discovery Insure app, I didn’t take it seriously.
My first score was 73 and I was marked down for using my phone while driving.
I got cocky because I thought my score was so good and all I had to do was to stop using my phone.
I did and, to my surprise, my score dropped to 70 because the app had picked up some harsh braking and speeding.
So I decided to follow the speed limit (no matter how slow I thought it was) and my score went up to only 71. On the next trip, my score dropped to 70 again because of some harsh acceleration. I made a mental note to move off slower when the traffic lights turned green.
And this was my dance with the Discovery Insure app, always wanting to beat my previous score.
Things got worse when I went to the leaderboard and discovered my colleague had a much higher score than I had.
I couldn’t bear the smugness she might display, so I had to beat her. I’m still trying.
– Mamello Masote