Bringing micro-insurance to life

The concept of micro-insurance has a host of potential benefits and now a new app could open it up to more clients

Insurance News

By Paul Lucas

It’s hard to believe that the term micro-insurance was first coined back in 1999 because there still seems something new and ultra-modern about it – the idea of supplying protection against specific perils to help people, particularly with low incomes, get the essential cover they need.

Perhaps the concept still seems so new then, because the insurance industry has yet to capitalise on it to its full extent. However, now one company is hoping to change that by combining the concept with something that is about as modern as it gets.

Synechron has launched an app called MyPossessions, which is meant to embrace the benefits of micro-insurance by combining it with mobile technology and smartphones. It allows end-users to create an inventory of their valued belongings and insure them as needed, with clear views into their possessions, valuations, policies, claims articles and account information.

“We saw there was a lack of innovative options around ‘microinsurance’ and at the same time a rapid growth in mobile technology and smart phones making it imperative for insurers to adopt mobile as a strategy,” Ashish Nangla, senior director of the insurance practice at Synechron, explained to Insurance Business. “It is extremely vital for insurers to incorporate modern technologies in their existing environments to keep up with technological transformation and given a lack of clarity and insight into the actual risk insurers cover.”

The idea behind the app is that it allows users to create an inventory of their valued belongings and insure them ‘as-needed’. Through the app, customers can also view possessions (registered and protected) and their valuation, policies, claims, articles, and account information. It allows them to create and manage inventories on a single-screen dashboard with advanced, cloud-based data security and a flexible insurance model.

It is hoped that through micro-insurance, property and casualty insurance providers can establish themselves on a mobile platform and make the claims process easier for both insurer and customer.
“Brokers can use the same app for better customer engagement and having the same insight that a carrier needs to have,” Nangla explained. “Brokers can integrate MyPossessions into their environment and in-turn can share this information with carriers by becoming a data aggregator.

“The insurance industry is ripe for innovation. Consumers want a mobile friendly experience and to be able to easily conduct transaction on their smart devices, making mobile insurance applications the wave of the future… we expect that consumers, agents and brokers will all be looking for new applications to further digitize their businesses.”

The question is, as readers involved in the insurance industry how ready do you feel your customers are for apps like this? Is there a genuine appetite on the market for these products already… or is this still “one for the future”? Leave a comment below with your thoughts.

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