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BOSCH has introduced a cheap and easy way to monitor vehicle fleets and drivers, launching a Bosch plug-in telemetry sensor device which delivers precise event data such as driving behaviour and crash detection for telematics, fleet management and insurance applications.

Unveiled at the recent Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, the smart Bosch plug-in telemetry sensor device, called the Telematics eCall Plug (TEP), fits into a standard 12V car cigarette lighter socket.

Data from the TEP can be used for insurance purposes but is also set up to be used by fleet operators while the device’s eCall function registers car crash severity and can help to save lives by enabling faster emergency response times.

Its built-in sensors and microcontroller can accurately track driving behaviour parameters such as acceleration, braking and cornering forces, then transmits this data to the driver’s smartphone via Bluetooth.

Bosch’s expertise in crash detection and airbag controllers guarantees high quality data, while the cost-efficiency of this new device makes it a very viable alternative to standard ‘black box’ or dongle solutions.

The collected data can be used to help improve safety by identifying aggressive driving and enables more personalised insurance, by rewarding safe drivers with discounts on premiums.

The data can also help insurers identify and reduce fraudulent claims. Fleet operators can use the acquired data for monitoring driving behaviour.

The eCall function uses acceleration sensors and intelligent embedded algorithms to detect car accident events and their severity. Accident alerts are sent to a call centre via smartphone. The call centre then contacts the emergency services and can also trigger roadside assistance.

Plugging into the standard 12V DC car outlet makes retrofit installation quick and easy in any vehicle. There is no connection to the car’s IT infrastructure, where any risk of hacking is eliminated.

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