Recognising the influencing role that technology plays in younger drivers lives, in particular, we asked Isabelle at miDrive to tell us about their new app and how it can help female learners become more confident drivers in a shorter period of time.
This is what Isabelle thinks about the future of learning to drive, and how you, as a female, can get more out of your driving lessons.
Please explain why we need an app in this area Isabelle?
If you remember taking driving lessons, you’ll know that the road to getting your licence certainly isn’t a walk in the park. British citizens have been taking driving tests since 1935, and, apart from huge advances in the cars we drive, the actual process hasn’t changed much.
Of course, everyone’s goal, when they start taking lessons, is to to get their driving licence as quickly as possible, but some of us take longer than others and it can be hard to understand why and what to do about it.
With this in mind, miDrive is a new iPhone app designed to take you from finding your driving instructor right through to passing your test, providing useful feedback, information and support which is what makes it different. The idea behind the app is that the process of learning to drive doesn’t have to be stressful and can – contrary to popular belief – actually be quite rewarding.
How might this help learner drivers get more out of their driving lessons?
If there’s one thing which fills many learner drivers with fear, it’s the thought of failure. Confidence issues can be really crippling on the road, and, as the data tell us, many females are more likely to suffer with self-doubt when it comes to getting behind the wheel.
Using GPS tracking, which is what miDrive does, learner drivers can track where they’ve driven in their lessons and learn from that experience, providing an accurate and shareable view of where they’ve been, what speed they’ve driven at and how far they’ve travelled.
Being able to take control of the learning process, and to have challenges and achievements set out in front of you, will not only give a serious boost of confidence, but it also helps drivers focus on the task at hand, keeping them on the right track; showing what to work on and particular individual strengths.
Does online learning make a real difference?
Yes it can. With learning resources readily available online, the learning period doesn’t have to be restricted to a couple of hours in the car each week. Learning to drive is becoming more about what you can do outside of your lessons as well as in them.
Research into gender differences tells us that whilst men are often happy to get in the driving seat and go, many young women need more preparation to give them that same level of confidence in the end.
Being able to find out what you need to know, when you need to know it is a luxury that – thanks to technology – we can all take advantage of now.
Can technology change the way we learn to drive?
As I see it, the driver training industry can’t ignore technology. Driving instructors are turning to technology to connect with students via social media, to find teaching aids and make use of theory test resources.
Aside from the tools available to driving instructors on the web, technology also affects learner drivers when it comes to the financial aspect of learning to drive. Telematics insurance allows learner and newly-qualified drivers to save a lot of money on their premiums, based on their individual driving behaviour rather than on age group statistics.
I think this is especially important for females since the introduction of last year’s Gender Directive. As women are no longer able to benefit from lower insurance premiums by virtue of their lesser gender risk, telematics technology is the only way to save serious money on your insurance.
Thank you for explaining this Isabelle. This is an interesting development and we recognise that IT could help all women save money on the cost of their driving lessons by helping them become more confident drivers sooner.
Having said that, FOXY also believes that the fact many young women drivers take longer to pass their test (and spend more on driving lessons than many young men) may well explain why we are the lesser gender risk. Because we take the subject so much more seriously perhaps…
However we do agree that whilst the way we learn to drive might not have changed much over the years, the technology we make use of in the car and outside of driving lessons has come on in leaps and bounds. And that apps like miDrive can turn the driving test into an exciting experience rather than a terrifying hurdle to be overcome…