When it comes to property insurance, like homeowners or renters insurance, comparing policies between carriers can feel like comparing apples to apples. Most policies cover the same things, no matter what company is selling them. So small details, like mobile applications, can influence consumers choosing a company.
For those glued to their smartphone and interested in managing their insurance policies digitally, these are some of the best insurance companies to consider.
GEICO Mobile By The Namesake Insurer
Keynote, which ranks customer digital experiences of financial services companies, recently ranked the GEICO app #1 on their 2016 Mobile Insurance Scorecard.
GEICO Mobile is a single mobile app that allows policyholders to communicate directly with agents, and request accident or roadside assistance if they have an auto policy. They also have access to a digital ID card through the app to review and share policy information. More and more states are allowing the digital versions as a proof-of-coverage, so there's no need to worry about misplacing a card in your vehicle.
Policyholders also can establish an alert system through the app that notifies them via text message of payments due, a policy expiring and even their credit card expiration date nearing. It's a nice perk for the policyholder always on the go and who might forget to pay their premium.
The ability to chat with a representative is also useful for anyone who might have a question about their coverage but can't make a phone call.
State Farm's Mobile Devices
State Farm has seven separate mobile apps - most of which cater to their auto insurance policyholders.
But the company's flagship Pocket Agent app allows policyholders to do a number of different things: They can access their State Farm Bank account, view their insurance card and submit a claim. Pocket Agent is an easy way for a customer to reach their agent, too, since it stores their information.
The most impactful app might be State Farm's Drive Safe & Save Mobile, which collects basic information about a policyholder's driving. Depending on their driving habits, a policyholder might be able to earn discounts on their auto insurance premium.
Some of the other State Farm apps include CarCapture for photographing and shopping for cars; the Steer Clear app for managing a young driver discount program; a driver feedback app that also has a separate edition for instructors; and an app to assist policyholders in organizing for a move.
Allstate Mobile and Digital Locker
Allstate has a suite of mobile apps -- some specifically designed for customers with certain policies.
Allstate Mobile is the company's primary app and it is similar to GEICO Mobile and State Farm's Pocket Agent. It enables Allstate policyholders to store agent information, policy documents, manage claims and has a digital ID card, amongst other features.
The company's Drivewise Mobile app serves the same function as State Farm's Drive safe & Save app -- it logs information as a policyholder drives and rewards good driving habits. If someone isn't a good drive, they aren't penalized. However, the rewards are not in the form of discounted premiums. Policyholders earn points that can be redeemed toward merchandise, gift cards and other offers.
GoodRide is an app for motorcycle policyholders and has a lot of cool features. Bike riders can log maintenance and part details, keep track of where they ride and share their trips via the app.
The Allstate Motor Club app is a portal for 24/7 roadside assistance that policyholders can use in any car and can request with just the click of a button.
Allstate's Digital Locker, which is free for anyone to download and use, might be the most useful of all the apps. It's a tool for creating a detailed inventory of a user's personal belongings (including photos) in case they ever need to file an insurance claim.