Ever wanted a third eye to keep watch of the road ahead so that it is able to see everything even when you can't?
Many say autonomous cars are the future and that the control of man over his vehicle will soon be at end. They believe that relinquishing control of the steering wheel and handing it over to the unwavering control of a computer chip is the best way forward. By doing so many think that the number of accidents due to drink driving, inattentiveness or the case of being at the wrong place and at the wrong time will be virtually non-existent.
Arguably, as good as computers are, they will never be able to trump a good driver's instinct or the ability to assess a situation before making a judgment call. There are certain instances where human intervention is absolutely necessary and this is where gadgets like Mobileye come in. It offer the best of both worlds, allowing you to maintain control of a car but warn you should things get out of hand.
It's essentially a driver assistance system that is able to detect and classify various objects on the road such as pedestrians, vehicles, lane markings and traffic signs. If it senses an impending collision, Mobileye issues an audio and visual warning, alerting the driver of the danger ahead, giving him/her enough time to take the appropriate measures to avoid an incident.
Sporting similar dimensions to an average wristwatch, Mobileye sits on a vehicle's dashboard and scans the road ahead. It mainly has six operating parameters, which are; Lane Departure Warning (LDW), Forward Collision Warning (FCW), Pedestrian Collision Warning (PCW), Headway Monitoring and Warning (HMW), Intelligent High-beam Control (IHC) and Speed Limit Indicator (SLI).
The LDW function, alerts a driver if the system senses the vehicle veering off into another lane. It activates when the turn indicator is not used when the vehicle crosses the lane markings. FCW, senses a collision up to 2.7 seconds before it happens to warn the driver to take evasive maneuvers. PCW is pretty similar to FCW but is meant to warn of an impending collision with pedestrians but only works at speeds up to 50km/h and during daylight.
HMW monitors the distance of vehicles directly in front and alerts the driver should said distance reach an unsafe level but what will be helpful to oncoming motorists is IHC, which turns off and on a vehicle's high beam so as not to dazzle on coming traffic. So smart is Mobileye that with its SLI function, it can recognise various speed limit signs and notify a driver when he or she has exceeded said limit. This will be particularly useful to law abiding citizens but for a number of others, can be more of an annoyance than a Godsend.
Believe it or not, this tech isn't new and is being installed by a number of automakers including Volvo in various models of their line up. Unfortunately, most cars in our country don't come with, what very well might be life saving kit and as such were are at a higher risk of being involved in a collision. But that might soon change as Mobileye is now being offered to the Malaysian market.
Admittedly, should you want this system in your vehicle, its going to be costly. Mobileye costs a whopping RM5,999. But if you can stomach the idea of shelling out the dough for the device, you might be dramatically reducing the chances of being involved in an accident.