Everybody knows that one of the main advantages of advances computer scientists are making in Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning is that those techniques can be utilized to make fully automated cars – cars that not only drive themselves, but learn the road and the environment just as a human would. But AI can improve other areas of “life on the road,” as it were, to make the whole affair easier for the motorists.
One of those areas is roadside assistance and emergency service requirements. Cars may soon be able to drive themselves, but that doesn’t mean they will be immune from mechanical failures, punctures, electrical glitches, and the like. Long into the future we are going to need roadside assistance for our vehicles, which is why it is worth investing in improving such services and bringing them up to speed with other technologies.
HONK is one such outfit trying to modernize the road-side assistance by means of utilizing AI and machine learning to render better service to the customers. The old-fashioned services like AAA may have upgraded their phone lines to a sleek smartphone app, but with HONK you get the benefit of an artificial intelligence algorithm logging your call for help, pinpointing your location, and dispatching the closest and most relevant unit to your rescue. What’s more, they have integrated their service with towing professionals and insurers – and one would imagine with repair shops, pretty soon – so that the customer gets an all-in-one sort of service every time a road incident occurs.
What that means, for the end user, is less hassle and quicker “bounce” time, by which we mean the time it takes for you to recover from a roadside incident and get back on the road and on the way to your destination. And isn’t that what we want at the end of the day? Well, that, and an assurance that we are not being overcharged for the services that we receive. Now that has always been a sore point with traditional services. But with modern networked applications you get a lot of transparency as regards the pricing. That is why ride-sharing apps are so much cheaper than good old taxi cabs.
As for drawbacks, well, just like everything else derived from Information Technology, there is a little bit of concern about privacy. Applications that deliver the best and fastest services to you usually log the most amount of data about you. But, all things considered, people may find it is a fair trade. You give up some privacy (such as your location being tracked in real-time) in exchange for more convenience. We reckon it’s a deal many people are going to take.