Using this app while driving could actually make you safer
Many of today's higher-end cars come with systems that alert the driver if they're engaging in unsafe driving practises. However, what about those of us who have older or less pricey vehicles? Well, Spain's University of Alcalá has developed a smartphone app that reportedly serves much the same purpose.
Known as DriveSafe (not to be confused with the Google Glass application of the same name), the app requires users to mount their phone so it's looking out the windshield.
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Using the phone's accelerometer, GPS and rear camera, the software monitors acceleration, braking, steering wheel turns, position within the lane, the manner in which lane changes are made, driving speed (as compared to the speed limit, as posted on online map services), and the manner in which the driver approaches other vehicles from behind.
The app provides real-time audible and visual warnings when it determines that unsafe driving is occurring, plus it records videos and map locations of those moments, which can be viewed afterwards. Additionally, it categorizes the overall driving style of each trip as being either normal, drowsy or aggressive.
The university is currently looking for partners to help commercialize the technology.