ATX Group, a telematics service provider to the automotive industry, reported today that it recovered approximately 90 percent of the telematics-equipped vehicles that its subscribers in North America reported stolen in 2004.
In the future, ATX reportedly expects its stolen vehicle recovery rate to increase as the industry moves from analog-based telematics systems embedded in vehicles to more advanced, digital systems which provide even better contact with stationary vehicles.
“Given this performance and the low cost (first year of service is often
free and the hardware comes standard), why would anyone purchase an aftermarket, stolen vehicle locating system? Especially when you are probably eligible for the same kind of insurance discount,” said Gary Wallace, vice president of corporate relations for ATX.
ATX provides location-based telematics services, which includes locating stolen vehicles, to such luxury brand vehicles as Mercedes-Benz, BMW, Maybach and Rolls-Royce Motor Cars.
When an ATX subscriber reports a stolen car to police and provides appropriate passcodes to ATX, ATX uses the Global Positioning System (GPS) satellite capabilities built into telematics-equipped
cars to notify and guide police to the vehicle’s location. Unlike other types of stolen vehicle locating systems, those used by ATX’s automotive OEM (original equipment manufacturer) customers are reportedly not contingent on special equipment being installed in local law enforcement centers and is not limited to specific markets where radio coverage is available.
In addition to satellite coverage, ATX also relies upon the nation’s wireless telecommunications network to transmit data from a stolen vehicle. Many auto insurance companies provide discounts to policyholders who have this feature within their telematics service package.
ATX’s telematics services also include automatic collision notification or (ACN), in which the telematics-equipped vehicle automatically notifies the ATX response center in Dallas-Fort Worth if airbags deploy or emergency tensioning restraints activate during a crash.
ATX response specialists can then help guide emergency responders to the actual location of the vehicle using data sent from the vehicle. Likewise, drivers can also summon emergency medical, police or tow truck assistance from ATX by pressing an in-vehicle button specifically dedicated for such use.
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