A new mobile phone application designed to characterize driving styles could promote better driving behavior.
Researchers in the Technical University of Valencia's Group of Computer Networks-DISCA have developed DrivingStyles, an app designed to detect and correct bad driving habits. DrivingStyles uses a Bluetooth device to collect information from the electronic control unit of the vehicle such as speed, acceleration, revs, accelerator position, and geographical position. After gathering the information, the user sends the route data to a Web site where it is analyzed. "From an algorithm based on neural networks the system is able to characterize the type of road and the user's driving style," says head project researcher Carlos Tavares.
Drivers participating in the pilot test have direct access to all routes recorded by the Web portal of the platform, and to data such as acceleration graphics, speed, and route maps, including an individualized analysis of driving style. A correct driving behavior can save as much as 20 percent of fuel consumption and enhance road safety. "This system could be used by insurance companies to offer discounts to low-risk drivers," Tavares says.
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