Mercedes Developing Software That Helps You Avoid Crime-Ridden Streets

Crime

The software is likely to be rolled out in next-generation Mercedes models.

Mercedes wants to help reduce the amount of auto-related crime in certain areas by developing software for its future vehicles that will help drivers avoid dangerous areas when looking for a parking space. According to Australia’s Drive, the software will use police data to build a database of the locations with a higher chance of encountering vandalism, assault and other crimes in notorious areas.

"We can select a parking spot and analyze how much crime has happened in that area over the last weeks,” Mercedes software developer Markus Ehmann explained.

“We took open data from the city of Seattle and compared that with data from the parking spaces at your target location.” The system will then color code safe locations when searching for a parking space. Green indicates the area is very safe, while yellow means the area is still safe but "you should consider going to a green one". Red indicates you should avoid the area at all costs.

Other information such as walking distances to final destinations and hourly parking fees will be displayed through the Mercedes-Benz User Experience infotainment screen. Mercedes is planning to roll out the application in next-generation models so don’t be surprised if it debuts in the new technologically advanced S-Class, which is expected to arrive in 2020. The software is still in development and is likely to be available in limited regions through a dedicated Mercedes app store.

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One potential issue, however, is the availability of up-to-date crime statistics sorted by location and offense type, as Mercedes admitted the system will rely on “current and up to date data” as opposed to quarterly or annual reports. “It’s very interesting because it draws on local geographic knowledge and all sorts of statistics including crime statistics and parking spot availability,” an Australian Mercedes-Benz spokesman told the publication. “Should something like that become available I’m sure the take up would be very strong.”

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