Automotive

Forget face detection - this Japanese car seat can tell who's sitting on it

A group of Japanese researchers at the Advanced Institute of Industrial Technology have developed a car seat that can identify drivers while they're sitting down
A group of Japanese researchers at the Advanced Institute of Industrial Technology have developed a car seat that can identify drivers while they're sitting down
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The car seat has 360 sensors built into it (Image: Advanced Institute of Industrial Technology)
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The car seat has 360 sensors built into it (Image: Advanced Institute of Industrial Technology)
The seat can detect where pressure is being put on it (Image: Advanced Institute of Industrial Technology)
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The seat can detect where pressure is being put on it (Image: Advanced Institute of Industrial Technology)
A group of Japanese researchers at the Advanced Institute of Industrial Technology have developed a car seat that can identify drivers while they're sitting down
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A group of Japanese researchers at the Advanced Institute of Industrial Technology have developed a car seat that can identify drivers while they're sitting down

Who needs face detection when your car can know who's sitting in it based on their rear-end? A group of Japanese researchers at the Advanced Institute of Industrial Technology (AIIT) have developed a car seat that can identify drivers while they're sitting down.

The car seat has 360 sensors built into it (Image: Advanced Institute of Industrial Technology)
The car seat has 360 sensors built into it (Image: Advanced Institute of Industrial Technology)

The way the technology works is pretty simple. The seat is retrofitted with 360 different sensors. Those sensors take into account things like your weight, the highest value of pressure on the seat, and where you come in contact with the seat. The idea is that we all sit in car seats relatively the same way each time, so the seat should be able to tell who is sitting in it, ensuring that the person is the owner of the car rather than a car thief.

The seat can detect where pressure is being put on it (Image: Advanced Institute of Industrial Technology)
The seat can detect where pressure is being put on it (Image: Advanced Institute of Industrial Technology)

While it seems like the tech might be problematic, the researchers claim the seat is able to accurately identify the person sitting in it 98 percent of the time. That's a pretty impressive accuracy rate, but it also means that one in every 50 times the seat would in theory not be able to recognize you, potentially resulting in your inability to drive your own car. It's also not clear how the seat would deal with things like weight loss or gain, the wearing of unusual clothing, or injuries that might effect how you sit down.

The AIIT researchers hope to work with car companies to bring the tech to vehicles as an anti-theft features in the next two to three years.

What do you think? Would you be interested in seat detection in your car?

Source: TechCrunch

14 comments
Joseph Shimandle
Too much time on their hands with more techonolgy to go wrong on a car.
Von Meerman
It sounds like exactly the sort of buggy gimmick that comes and goes leaving only lighter wallets and regret.
thk
Over engineering.
Joseph Shimandle
Why not put a thumb print reader on the engine start button that would unlock the car computer for authorized drivers only.
Bill Bennett
something that will break and leave you dead in the water in in five years or 16,000 miles, like all the Minis we see breaking here a \"oh sorry, that is not a warranty issue, yes we know you car is in warranty, but the $2800.00 clutch is not covered,, the bloody car had 16k and mini charged for it, horrible car
Bill Bennett
seat sensors are notorious for failing, the wires break when a FAT ASS or sharp object applies weight to it
Dan Veronese
Why?
Mark A
Dear Japanese Engineer, I am much taller than my wife and am literally unable to sit in the car before I move the seat. Simplify your system with two different RF keys that identify each of us before we enter the car so the seat and mirrors will be in the correct place before we enter. Thank you. Send royalty checks to me.
Bryan Paschke
Leave it to the Japanese to identify us by our butt prints.
agulesin
I thought it was designed to set the seat and mirrors according to the driver? nope? then it\'s a waste of time. What happens when you take the car to service, or lend it to a pal? do they have to use a (silicon?) model of your backside in order to drive it? What would be more useful is fa** detection which automatically opens the windows... LOL