A new AI-powered driver app has launched for fleets, following trials that showed it can bring a dramatic change in driving habits.
Developed by Applied Driving Techniques (ADT), in partnership with AI app specialist Sfara, the Applied Companion app detects and logs at-risk driving events and then aims to correct driver behaviour issues with targeted safety messages, performance reports and ‘triggered training’.
A 15-month trial of the app has already shown it can bring considerable benefits; ADT witnessed a significant reduction in speeding (68%), hard breaking (70%) and rapid acceleration (90%).
It also includes a suite of personal safety features that provide 24/7 protection to lone workers.
“Applied Companion takes a driver-centric and supportive approach to revolutionise fleet risk management,” said Andy Phillips, global managing partner of Applied Driving Techniques (Global Solutions). “This is not simply about changing behaviour, but also attitude, by constantly reinforcing your safety message and treating drivers as individuals with unique needs.”
The tech makes use of the sensor inputs of a smartphone, combined with learning AI, and can detect risky driving behaviours – such as harsh braking, rapid acceleration, contextual speeding, phone handling, crash detection – and generate actionable information. The app can even distinguish between being a passenger or driver, so knows when and when not to attribute driving events to an employee.
It then sends targeted email or SMS messages to the driver in the first instance, followed by one or more of 27 Triggered Training modules. There’s a weekly performance report for both employees and key stakeholders, including a simple ranking system to encourage healthy competition.
The personal safety features give app users 24/7 access to an emergency call centre that provides support in the event of an urgent situation. An alarm can be raised with a swipe of the phone, while the triple tap timer enables either a three-tap process – even when a smartphone is in a pocket or bag – to call for assistance or a scheduled check call to confirm safety. It also uses latest crash detection tech, using proprietary Extended Sensor Processing (ESP) features.
Further safety and compliance features are planned for later in the year.