Inattentiveness is the cause of many vehicle accidents. We may counsel drivers not to take the wheel when tired or stressed, but that is not a practical option for most people. Education is another approach that looks good on paper but has not delivered in practice: European driving tests are much more comprehensive than those in the US in particular, but the regions suffer similar fatality and accident rates. However help is on the way: the latest camera-based safety systems aim to counter these unavoidable human conditions. Such systems, according to ABI Research, will enjoy a market well in excess of $100 million by 2012.
“Acknowledgment of the inherent flaws in human beings has led automobile manufacturers and suppliers to develop new technologies that can save drivers from themselves,” says principal analyst David Alexander. “Systems that can analyze road situations and provide additional warnings to drivers have started to appear in newer car models, and the camera is at the heart of many of them.”
Keeping cost down is critical to consumer acceptance, and indications are that the newest machine vision technology will make these advanced safety features affordable for all.
“Having the car look out for other vehicles and track the road ahead is one major area of current development,” adds Alexander, “but watching the driver and passengers is another very important camera-based application that is beginning to emerge.” Occupant detection and monitoring allows “smart” automobiles to customize airbag deployment to the size and position of the passengers. As this technology advances there will be additional safety and comfort capabilities added.
Camera-Based Automotive Systems (http://www.abiresearch.com/products/market_research/CBAS), a study by ABI Research, examines all aspects of the rapidly developing technology of automotive machine vision. While obstacle detection is a very important part of the study, it also covers driver monitoring and occupant detection. Warning the driver of visible signs of fatigue is as significant as identifying a potential collision, because until OEMs are confident that the reliability of these systems has grown to the point that the vehicle can take evasive action, the driver is still in total control.
The research provides an analysis of global market trends, costs, and technological evaluations of the different approaches and strategies used by safety system developers, as well as discussion of recent product announcements. System sales forecasts are provided globally, by region and by application, through 2012. The study forms part of ABI Research’s Driver Assistance Systems Research Service (http://www.abiresearch.com/products/service/Driver_Assistance_Research_Service).
Founded in 1990 and headquartered in New York, ABI Research maintains global operations supporting annual research programs, intelligence services, and market reports in broadband and multimedia, RFID and M2M, wireless connectivity, mobile wireless, transportation, and emerging technologies. For information, visit http://www.abiresearch.com, or call +1.516.624.2500.