Travelers, Amazon enter smart-home partnership

Travelers announced a multifaceted smart-home partnership with online retail giant Amazon.

The insurer is launching a storefront on Amazon, amazon.com/Travelers. There, customers in eligible states can get a discount on smarthome kits that include security cameras, water sensors, motion detectors, an Echo Dot and a hub to coordinate all of them. The customers also get a discount on their home policy. Some customers can also get a Dot at a discount without the full kit: those are currently available to Travelers home insurance customers in California and Travelers Quantum Home 2.0 customers in Colorado.

Travelers also is launching two skills for Amazon's virtual assistant, Alexa. The "Travelers" skill functions to answer policy questions, while the "Travelers Home Central" one provides home maintenance and safety tips.

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The new Amazon.com Inc. Echo, left, and Echo Plus sit on display during the company's product reveal launch event in downtown Seattle, Washington, U.S., on Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2017. Amazon unveiled a smaller, cheaper version of its popular Alexa-powered Echo speaker that the e-commerce giant said has better sound. Photographer: Daniel Berman/Bloomberg

The news comes as Amazon has made several overtures to the home insurance industry, especially around its smart home line. The company registered as an insurance agent in India after making several investments in an insurtech there, Acko. It's also launching a comparison site in the UK. Stateside, it was rumored to be interested in home insurance, but has not made any concrete plans.

“Smart home technology is making it easier for all of us to monitor our homes and help protect us from some of the most common causes of damage," says Michael Klein, EVP and president of personal insurance for Travelers. "Our Amazon digital storefront conveniently brings together smart home devices, installation services, discounts and insurance knowledge in one central location to help our customers and agents manage risk and take a more proactive approach to home safety.”

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