New technology that can tell who is driving your car has been developed by a Huddersfield company.
Digital technology firm Control F1 has patented driver recognition software which automatically identifies who is behind the wheel just seconds after setting off on a journey – based on their driving style.
The system uses technology available in internet-connected vehicles or technology that can be retro-fitted into older models – the so-called “little black box” used by insurance firms to monitor how safely you’re driving – to learn the driving style of different users.
It records data such as acceleration, braking, cornering and speed as soon as a driver sets off. It continues to collect data over a period of time and multiple journeys. The longer a driver uses a vehicle, the more quickly and accurately the system can recognise them.
The owner of a vehicle can then identify and register the allowed individual drivers of their car via a mobile application or secure web portal and set up alerts based on dates and times the vehicle can be used by each driver.
Control F1 said the software system could alert vehicle owners immediately if it noted an unrecognised driver using their vehicle. It cold also benefit businesses running fleets of vehicles, vehicle rental firms and insurance companies – as well as allowing parents to limit access to vehicles for their driving age children and help police to quickly eliminate registered drivers from their investigations if a vehicle was involved in a crime.
Control F1, based at Bates Mill, Colne Road, is now looking for specialist hardware providers to help test and refine the system with a view to getting it on the road by the end of the year.
Chief executive Carl Howarth sai: “Initial studies suggest that the current system should be able to quickly identify up to six registered drivers with a high percentage of accuracy. For more than six drivers – for example a commercial vehicle being used by a high number of drivers – the system will take a little longer to reach a conclusion.”
He said the growth of cars with internet access would increase the use of the technology and provide a higher number of data points, including seat position, rev counters for gear changes, mobile phone connected to the vehicle and even an approximate weight in the seat – all of which contribute to identifying the driver more quickly.