GM App Brings License Plate Readers to The Masses
License plate readers are already a controversial technology when in the hands of police departments, but General Motors is trying to figure out how to put such a device into the hands of consumers. Yes, that’s right. The brains at GM’s research and development facility in China have developed an app that would allow people to scan license plates with their smart phones and contact the drivers with a direct message. According to Computer World, the DiDi Plate app is still in its development phase, and it uses the built-in camera of an Android phone to scan nearby license plates. Once the plate number is scanned, the user is then able to send a text message to the vehicle’s owner – regardless of whether or not he or she has signed up for this app. RELATED: See images of 2014 and older Chevrolet vehicles In an imaginary world, GM would like us to believe that its license plate reader could be used to ask out that cute motorist next to you or to ask someone nicely to move their car if it is blocking you in. As much as we love the idea of being able to tell someone to stop loitering in the passing the lane or urging people not to text and drive, the inevitable invasion of privacy available from such a technology is concerning. Looking past the annoying, anonymous messages, it probably wouldn’t take for companies to start using the technology that could localize advertisements as you drive by a specific area.
On top of that, though, the worst part is that such an app would actively promote the use of texting while driving. Not very helpful telling someone to stop texting and driving by using a technology that forces you to text and drive.
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