The age of smart cars may be closer than we think. With new advances in technology, vehicles are now “smarter” than ever thanks to advanced computer systems, cameras and communication designs that actually allow vehicles to talk to each other.
While still years away, the game-changing potential of smart cars is real and will happen in some form. This is especially true as governments are considering making mandatory some of these changes to improve overall safety and avoid deadly accidents.
However, despite these advances are smart cars really all that beneficial? Here are some of the potential benefits that smart cars will bring to our world.
The Benefits of Smart Cars
Vehicular Communication: This may be the most important aspect of smart vehicles, the ability to communicate with each other and take action that is far quicker than any human could respond. This means that many potential accidents can be avoided if the technology is perfected and lives can be saved as a result. Given just how many accidents are caused by human error or simply being unaware of approaching vehicles, this technology can definitely save lives.
Prevent Most Accidents: It has been estimated that only 20% of accidents involved drunken or unresponsive drivers and mechanical breakdowns, meaning that the other 80% are from more easily avoidable situations. This means that smart cars can cut down on most accidents that do occur when they can take control away from the driver and avoid potential accidents from occurring.
Cell phone Technology: One of the more interesting aspects in including cell and smartphones in the mix of smart cars. Given the prevalence of such devices with GPS systems included, it can speed up the overall process of conversion to this technology by several years.
The Drawbacks of Smart Cars
Even the best technological advancements come with a price. What follows are some of the potential drawbacks to this technology.
Cost: Such advanced technology will require vehicles to cost more than they do today. This is because of the numerous amounts of additional equipment needed in order to make this work. While the price of such technology will go down eventually, the sticker shock may be considerable at first.
Implementation: If tradition is followed, older vehicles will not be required to have this technology in place. That means implementation will take several years, if not decades to fully realize. There will be vehicles on the road that will not have this technology meaning that for some time people will still be vulnerable.
Privacy Concerns: There will be concerns of many about just how much information is being communicated through the system. It will be quite tempting to include the make, model, owner, driving record and other information that many see as private. Currently, proponents of smart cars are saying that the only information sent will be for basic safety reasons and not include such details, but that remains to be seen.
The overall advantages of smart cars are considerable since they can “see” other vehicles that may be potential threats. How this plays out over the next several years may very well change how we drive.