Irish drivers are adopting the dash cam as their primary weapon to take on fraudulent insurance claims.
What is a dash cam?
The idea behind a dash cam is a simple one. Should you be involved in an accident while driving, it’s best you have some supporting evidence of your story. Driver’s who have a dash cam are driving safe in the knowledge that should something happen, they have hard evidence to show they weren’t to blame.
Usually fitted with a suction cup to the windscreen, a dash cam typically has one camera lens which looks towards to road. Other features vary with the likes of auto-start recording being a nice feature to get.
Why are more drivers using a dash cam?
They are not a new technology at all and the truth is, dash cams have become affordable. You can pick up a dash cam on Mick’s Garage for as little as €23.50. Another huge benefit is the reward of having supporting evidence should you fall victim to a fraudulent claim. Given the incredible number of fraudulent claims occurring in Ireland, having a dashcam is almost essential.
Which dash cam should I buy?
Hold your horses there. While you can run out and buy a dash cam right now, surely a little part of you is wondering if your phone can play a part?
Once upon a time, you went to a store to rent movies and if you didn’t know how to get there, you used a sat nav. Today, you’ll likely watch movies on-demand and find your way around with a smartphone. Smartphones killed people’s interest in sat navs, with some of the smarter companies like Tomtom moving towards apps. If you are just starting out, we recommend trying out Nexar.
Nexar turns your smartphone into a dash cam
Yes, it does make sense. Chances are, if you have a phone holder on your windscreen, you already have a great quality camera staring at the road. The team at Nexar realised that and set about making an artificial intelligence app that could record your driving. The app not only acts as a dash cam but also notifies the driver of hazards not within the line of sight.
Nexar uses a vehicle-to-vehicle network to crowd share data which allows these warnings to be shared. We have yet to see these in Ireland, but that is largely down to the app being brand new on Android.
Using the Nexar app
We tested the app by downloading it and simply turning it on before setting off for a spin. The app is non-intrusive and needs little or no interaction when driving. As a dash cam, Nexar is always recording the road but only records audio when using internal camera mode – more on that later.
Should the user tap on the screen with one finger, say “Hey Nexar” or the artificial intelligence system detects an accident, a clip is uploaded to the Nexar Cloud. When you two-finger tap the screen, you switch to internal camera mode. The team at Nexar are marketing this at taxi drivers or perhaps the next budding James Corden.
Should you be in an accident, not only will you have the video evidence to support your version of events, but Nexar will send you a full telemetry report upon request.
The verdict on Nexar
It’s likely to get better and also likely to not be free forever. For the time being, Nexar is a very capable dash cam app that will do exactly what you expect. On Android, it runs in the background but on iOS is must be the primary app. This is a real shame for phone navigation users. For the time being, Nexar is a completely free dash cam that could easily get you out of trouble should you fall victim to insurance fraud. Why wouldn’t you try it out? Could help you deal with an asshat like this guy someday.