Maruti, Microsoft join hands to drive in fully-automated driving test technology
Maruti Suzuki India on Tuesday announced a collaboration with Microsoft Research India under which a smartphone-based technology for testing applicants seeking driver’s license has been developed. Called Harnessing Automobile for Safety (HAMS), this technology has been deployed at Dehradun's Automated Driving Test Centre (ADTC) in association with Uttarakhand government's transport department.
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The major highlight - and advantage - of deploying HAMS at ADTC is that it only takes 10 minutes to complete a test and generate a report. This has brought down the average pass test to 54% from 90% in the earlier manual mode which points to a more comprehensive testing pattern. Maruti says that the feedback from candidates, including those who are unable to pass, has been positive because they tend to appreciate the objectivity and transparency of the entire process.
An applicant's car is fastened with a HAMS-enabled smartphone that keeps a watch on the driver as well as the road ahead. It makes use of artificial intelligence (AI) for efficient and robust operations. "For driving tests, HAMS has been customized to include capabilities such as precise tracking of the vehicle’s trajectory during designated test maneuvers," Maruti Suzuki informs.
In case a candidate does not agree with the test result, he or she can choose to view the video recording of the test drive.
The main idea of an automated testing process is, obviously, not to fail candidates but ensure they are absolutely capable and skilled to handle a vehicle as per Indian motor rules and road conditions. "Efficient testing of candidates seeking driver’s license is an important step towards imparting good driving behaviour. Use of latest technologies help bring transparency," says Ajay Kumar Tomer, Executive Advisor, Maruti Suzuki India. "HAMS, developed in partnership with Microsoft Research India, is an important tool to modernize the driving license test in our country. Starting with ADTC Dehradun, this technology will be introduced in more centres across several States."