DRINKING Uber could use AI to tell how drunk a passenger
14 June, 2018, 09:07
What about plugging typos into a pickup or drop off address?
Uber has partnered with organizations including Mothers Against Drunk Driving to encourage more people to call the service than to get behind the wheel after drinking too much. Uber AI will plug in all these algorithms into its system to detect how high or drunk the passenger is and then change its services like drivers with a good amount of experience with drunk passengers will be matched with their rider or the rider can be asked to come to a well-lit pick-up point. The idea is still in its early stages, and the company has no immediate plans to start using the technology as described in the application.
Based on how the system interprets that behavior, it may adjust how it arranges a match with a driver, the application said. And while the data could help drivers cater to user needs - maybe with a pre-reclined seat, or a helpfully placed bucket - it could also pave the way for further breaches of trust.
An Uber spokesperson said that the ride-sharing company is introducing new safety protocols including better driver background checks. And when the likelihood is comparatively low, the system may match riders "normally". To some, the concept may be counterintuitive to why they choose to hail an Uber.
"We file patent applications on many ideas, but not all of them actually become products or features".
The app used to summon rides could also feed other information to the driver, including a passenger's location, how accurately they are typing and even the angle they are holding their phone at.
The patent application comes following numerous cases of passengers attacking Uber drivers as well as incidents of riders accusing drivers of sexual assault.
Worse still, it could lead to more people trying to drive drunk. Some privacy experts question whether the information gathered could end up being stored to track health and lifestyle choices of Uber customers.
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