Automotive
FenSens sensor protects your fender

Many accidents occur when parking a vehicle, often because it is hard to see exactly how much space one has when backing up into a spot. Parking sensors significantly cut down on such accidents, but the vast majority of cars don’t have them and they can be too costly for many consumers to afford.

patent-claimedFenSens is an affordable wireless, connected and sensor-based parking assistance system that works in conjunction with an app for Android and iOS mobile devices. The patent-pending device gets attached to a vehicle’s front or rear license plate frame and is easy to install in less than five minutes. FenSens enables uses to see (through a visual display), hear (through beeps), and feel (via vibration) any near-by objects in a driver’s blind spots from the convenience of a mobile phone screen. An alarm buzzer sounds if FenSens is tampered with and the device will allow users to register it with specific phones, making it useless for unverified mobile devices.

FenSens ships in May at $149.99. But Indiegogo backers can order one now for a pledge starting at $99 for early birds. Its makers hope to raise $50,000 by Sept. 4.

There have been many driving assistance devices for cars before this, including CarVi. One thing that sets FenSens apart from many of them is its focus on parking assistance. That could, however, be its main appeal for some consumers and a drawback for others, who may prefer a product that helps them with all aspects of driving. Another negative is that its sensor only works for either the front or back of the car, not both. But a new Bluetooth chip to be added in 2017 will solve that issue. Having a camera in addition to the sensor would also enhance the product, and a version adding a camera is being developed.

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