Smartphones Can Tell if a Person Is Drunk or Not: Research


INTRO: Over the past few years, smartphones became an all-in-one package of varied sensors and processors. As a result, scientists and researchers are constantly coming with new ways to use these sensors for various purposes. Earlier we’ve seen researchers use smartphones to watch users’ psychological state. Now, a recent study has shown that smartphones can tell you once you are drunk using an already existing sensor.

According to the study by the researchers of Stanford University and therefore the University of Pittsburg, a smartphone, by using its accelerometer, can tell if its owner is drunk or not. The researchers have a proof-of-concept as they performed an experiment on a sample of twenty-two participants. And the smartphone was ready to detect a drunk person with 92% accuracy.

Now, previous researches have shown that a major sign of intoxication is a swaying gait. We all are therein situation once we see the entire world spinning and sway left and right in an effort to steer straight. So, the researchers used this idea and suggested the thought of using the built-in accelerometer (used to trace steps) in smartphones to trace the motion of the individual. If they walk straight, they are sober. However, if they need a swaying gait or left and right motion while walking, they’re intoxicated.

Now, within the experiment which the researchers performed on 22 participants, they strapped the phone to their back so as to live their motion. However, during a real-world situation, a private would never strap his/her phone to their back in any situation.

To ensure that their system works outside of a controlled environment, the lead researcher, Brian Suffoletto says that they’re going to be testing their system during a bar or a crowded place with the smartphones within the participants’ hands or pockets.

So, within the near future, smartphones could be ready to prevent users from driving their cars while drunk. As a result, it’ll improve road safety drastically also as increase the security of the users.

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