In 2004, Hari Balakrishnan and Sam Madden started the CarTel project at MIT, developing a mobile sensing system to collect and draw inferences from sensor data on mobile devices. The following years, they partnered with Boston taxi companies to accurately measure traffic surface conditions and traffic using award-winning new methods for mobile telematics. This research won multiple “best paper” and “test of time” awards from the top research conferences in Computer Science. In 2010, building on their academic success, they started Cambridge Mobile Telematics with Bill Powers.
Cambridge Mobile Telematics (CMT) is the world’s largest telematics service provider. Its mission is to make the world’s roads and drivers safer. The company’s AI-driven platform, DriveWell™, gathers sensor data from millions of IoT devices — including smartphones, proprietary Tags, connected vehicles, dashcams, and third-party devices — and fuses them together with contextual data to create a unified view of vehicle and driver behavior. Companies from the personal and commercial auto insurance, automotive, rideshare, personal safety, wireless, auto retail, and financial services industries use insights from CMT’s platform to power their risk assessment, safety, claims, and driver improvement programs. Headquartered in Cambridge, MA, with offices in Budapest, Chennai, Seattle, and Tokyo, CMT serves millions of people through 80 programs in 18 countries, including 21 of the top 25 US auto insurers.