Coyote Versus Roadrunner
New speed-trap-evading system coming to the U.S.
Next year, a French company called Coyote will unveil a use for car-to-car communication that's already on the roads in Europe: avoiding speeding tickets.
Unlike traditional radar and laser detectors, Coyote relies on human surveillance. Drivers who have a Coyote product -- like the Mini Coyote, which is dashboard-mounted and about the size of a cell phone -- push a button when they notice a speed trap. The signal is sent to a central computer, which recognizes the location and the direction of traffic being watched, and then sends an alert to all other Coyote customers within 12.5 miles of that area.
In France, the device (and its competitors) has already influenced police behavior: Coyote Chief Executive Jean-Marc Van Laethem said that police used to sit at one speed trap for several hours; now, they typically move after one.
Coyote debuted at the SEMA show and will be available in January via both its main service (a monthly charge of about $15 after three months of free service with the purchase of a Coyote product) and an iPhone app.
For more information on avoiding speed traps, check back to MSN Autos on Thursday for a story that explains the technology used by law enforcement, how to avoid it, and even how to best fight speeding tickets in court.
(Source: The New York Times' Wheels blog)
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