The insurer is eliminating the sale of its traditional policies in favor of more interactive options.
John Hancock life insurance policyholders will now receive discounts on their premiums for tracking fitness on wearable devices and regularly hitting their exercise targets.
Fitbit, Apple Watch and other device wearers may pay less for their insurance policies.
John Hancock life insurance is among the oldest North American insurers in that market. That said, as much as its company is steeped in tradition, it plans to cease the sale of those traditional policies. Instead, it plans to sell interactive policies that will include optional fitness tracking components. Those options can be enjoyed through devices the policyholders already own and use, such as a Fitbit, Apple Watch, and other popular wearable devices.
This represents a significant move for the 156 year john han, which is owned by Manulife Financial Corp, headquartered in Canada. It is the company’s first interactive insurance policy following a pilot program it has been running since 2015, reported the CBC. This model is being applied across all its different life insurance offerings.
The interactive John Hancock life insurance policies are already established through its partner.
Vitality Group, a John Hancock partner, pioneered interactive life insurance. The products are well established in Great Britain and South Africa. Moreover, since being piloted, they have become increasingly widespread in the U.S., as well.
Policyholders who use wearable fitness trackers and hit their exercise targets receive discounts on their premiums. Furthermore, they receive additional incentives to log their daily exercise and healthy food purchases through an app by sending those policyholders retail store gift cards.
The idea is to use technology consumers already own to benefit both the policyholder and the insurance company. The incentives encourage healthy habit adoption among policyholders. That said, insurance companies can also benefit because the healthier their policyholders are, the longer they live. When life insurance policyholders live longer, they pay premiums longer, too, so the insurance company still wins.
The main concern voiced about this type of interactive policy, such as the John Hancock life insurance products, is regarding consumer privacy. The current use of the collected data isn’t yet considered an issue, but some worry that rates may increase for those who don’t participate or who don’t keep up their fitness targets.