Can smartphones save you from distracted drivers?

Going beyond vehicle-to-vehicle communication, Honda wants pedestrians to join the conversation in order to keep them safe.
Written by Charlie Osborne, Contributing Writer

Smartphones may be a prime factor in driver distraction, but what if the mobile devices could also become a way to keep pedestrians safe?

Honda hopes that in the future pedestrian smartphones could become a valuable tool to alert drivers to their presence and reduce accidents on the road. The automaker has been working on a project revolving around dedicated short range communications (DSRC) in order to "enhance pedestrian safety near roadways."

The technology, dubbed Vehicle-to-Pedestrian (V2P), consists of a DSRC system embedded in a vehicle's dashboard and in a smartphone that a pedestrian carries. Within safety demonstrations, Honda says that in a number of scenarios -- including crossings, where views are obstructed and when cars are backing up -- GPS and DSRC signals sent between the person and vehicle can alert both parties to each other's presence, and driver behavior can be altered as a result.

A light on the dashboard warns the driver of pedestrians close-by, and an alert is displayed on a pedestrian's smartphone. In some cases, these alerts can take the form of alarm bells. The technology can be deployed through dedicated applications on mobile devices and through interactive dashboards.

The driver could also be sent additional information, such as whether the person is texting, on a phone call, or listening to music -- and is therefore likely to be distracted.

Honda is also exploring the possibilities of a motorcycle-to-car setup, which may help prevent collisions on the road when a driver or rider's vision is obstructed.

Via: Wired

Image credit: Honda

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com

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