Your vehicle needs your attention like no one else. You need to take it to a workshop or to a mechanic for diagnosis of common issues and knowing which parts need replacement. Imagine an app doing the same for you.
Researchers at MIT have developed this smartphone app which, using various diagnostic systems, combined with the information it gets by analyzing the sounds and vibrations produced by the car, diagnoses the problems. The basic idea of the app is to update the driver about upcoming issues of the car beforehand. On the average, the app could save a driver $125 a year and can improve car’s overall gas mileage by a few points.
“With today’s smartphones,” Siegel, one of the research team members, explains, “the sensitivity is so high, you can do a good job without needing any special connection. For some diagnostics, though, mounting the phone to a dashboard holder would improve the level of accuracy. Already, the accuracy of the results from the diagnostic systems they have developed all well in excess of 90 percent.”
Siegel and his colleagues collected data from a number of vehicles, including the ones that run perfectly fine and the ones which were in bad condition somehow, to test and develop the diagnostic system.
A commercial version of the app to be used by everyone will be available in a year while for other car geeks, a prototype app, equipped with all the diagnostic tools will be available for field testing within six months.