Oh what a feeling: New Toyotas will upload data to AWS to help create custom insurance premiums based on driver behaviour

Connected car vision has been in first gear for years, cloudy scale could jump-start plans

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Toyota has expanded its collaboration with Amazon Web Services in ways that will see many of its models upload performance data into the Amazonian cloud to expand the services the auto-maker offers to drivers and fleet owners.

Toyota already operates a “Mobility Services Platform” that it says helps it to “develop, deploy, and manage the next generation of data-driven mobility services for driver and passenger safety, security, comfort, and convenience”.

That data comes from a device called the “Data Communication Module” (DCM) that Toyota fits into many models in Japan, the USA and China.

Toyota reckons the data could turn into “new contextual services such as car share, rideshare, full-service lease, and new corporate and consumer services such as proactive vehicle maintenance notifications and driving behavior-based insurance.”

Toyota's connected car vision

Toyota's connected car vision. Click to enlarge

The company has touted that vision since at least the year 2016, but precious little evidence of it turning into products is available.

Which may be why Toyota has signed with AWS for not just cloud tech but also professional services.

The two companies say their joint efforts “will help build a foundation for streamlined and secure data sharing throughout the company and accelerate its move toward CASE (Connected, Autonomous/Automated, Shared and Electric) mobility technologies.”

Neither party has specified just which bits of the AWS cloud Toyota will take for a spin but it seems sensible to suggest the auto-maker is going to need lots of storage and analytics capabilities, making AWS S3 and Kinesis likely candidates for a test drive.

Whatever Toyota uses, prepare for privacy ponderings because while cheaper car insurance sounds lovely, having an insurer source driving data from a manufacturer has plenty of potential pitfalls. ®

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