From e-commerce to m-commerce, welcome to the world of Smart phone apps. The advent of smart phone has brought about many a change, practically getting you the world at your finger tips. And not to be left behind in this era, are insurance companies with insurance apps. Designed to cater to the needs of both policy holders and agents, these apps, give you easy management of your policy with just a “swipe and tap” of your gadget.
The Scope of Insurance Apps- What exactly are they
The primary aim of an insurance app is to give policy holders a quicker and hassle free way of managing their policies. With both life insurance and general insurance companies offering apps, you could now expect instant responses to transactions and queries.
Currently, general insurance companies offer comprehensive apps that take care of almost all needs- from purchasing a new plan to claims. Life insurance apps however, at this moment seem more restricted.
What you Could Do with an Insurance App
- Purchase a new policy instantly: From the initial stage of getting a premium quote till the final stage of premium payments, apps have it all for you. Payment options are through credit cards, debit cards and IVR. On purchase, policy document sent electronically could be printed for reference. The original would be sent by post in generally a week or so.
- Policy Renewal: Quick renewal of your policy with the mobile app. You could set a reminder for the renewal date, and on policy expiry make the required payment to get another year’s policy. Payment options are similar to purchasing a new policy.
- Claims: Accident on the road? Not to fret. With your mobile phone app, you could instantly register your claim. You would be required to click a picture of the damaged vehicle and send it along with the accident intimation to the insurer.
- Track the status of your claim: From the initial processing stage to the final reimbursement you would be able to track every step of your claim.
- Easy management: Have more than one policy with the same insurer, such as travel and motor? A single app would help you manage them efficiently by storing all relevant details of both policies.
- Reminders for premium due dates: Do not miss out on your premium dates. Set alerts or reminders to let you know when you should pay up.
- Additional services to locate the nearest garage in times of an emergency, hospital or just contact the insurer’s customer care.
Almost all insurers offering mobile apps currently do not charge for the facility. It is provided as an additional benefit to policy holders. However do note data/internet charges as per the schedule of charges of your mobile operator would be applicable.
Operating Platform and Access
Though the mobile app is available on multiple operating platforms- Android, iOS, Windows or Blackberry, do note, most apps are available only on select platforms. You may thus face an issue, if your insurer isn’t offering it to you on your gadget’s operating system.
Access to the app otherwise is pretty simple. All that is required is to download it on to your tab or phone.
Players in the market
Quite a few insurance companies already have launched mobile apps for the benefit of their customers. Leading the list are general insurance companies such as New India Assurance, Colamandalam, ICICI Lombard, Bajaj Allianz, HDFC Ergo etc…
With a large percentage of mobile phone users owning smart phones with active data connections, its surely a matter of time when transaction of insurance policies would become all the more quick and easy.
The Insurance Regulators App
Not left behind in the world of apps is IRDA’s very own one to help policy holders get an unbiased comparison of insurance products and premium rates. The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA) of India have introduced a smart phone application that offers a quick comparison of Unit Linked Insurance Policies (or ULIPs) introduced on or after 1 September 2010. The app works on Android, iOS, and Windows and BlackBerry platforms. With real time access to the repository products on IRDA, users could make a quick search- company wise, policy wise or simply by just entering key words.
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