CarSafe is a new driver safety app for Android phones that detects and alerts drivers to dangerous driving conditions and behavior. It uses computer vision and machine learning algorithms on the phone to monitor and detect whether the driver is tired or distracted using the front-facing camera while at the same time tracking road conditions using the rear-facing camera.
Today's smartphones do not, however, have the capability to process video streams from both the front and rear cameras simultaneously. In response, CarSafe uses a context-aware algorithm that switches between the two cameras while processing the data in real-time with the goal of minimizing missed events inside (e.g., drowsy driving) and outside of the car (e.g. tailgating).
Camera switching means that CarSafe technically has a "blind spot" in the front or rear at any given time. To address this, CarSafe uses other embedded sensors on the phone (i.e., inertial sensors) to generate soft hints regarding potential blind spot dangers.
Results from the CarSafe deployment are promising - CarSafe can infer a common set of dangerous driving behaviors and road conditions with an overall precision and recall of 83% and 75%, respectively.
CarSafe is the first dual-camera sensing app for smartphones and represents a new disruptive technology because it provides similar advanced safety features otherwise only found in expensive top-end cars.