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FenSens Intro

Ever been in that awkward situation where you have to explain to another car owner why you rammed into his car while you where reversing even though you a not blind or those numerous time when you scrape the hood of your precious car on the wall while trying to park meticulously, well say your goodbyes to those days as there is a new automobile device that prevents the occurrence of such embarrassing and frustrating moments. The FenSens have come up with a smart number plate frame that,  through the use of integrated sensors, prevents backward collisions when reversing and car scrapes by forward collision when parking while all the while providing the user with visual and graphical information through wireless connection to a smartphone.

Collision Avoidance Systems

This technology, however, isn’t novel. There have been of late many cars fitted with such collision avoidance systems (CAS), such as the Collision Mitigation Braking System™ (CMBS™) of Honda Sensing™, which reduces the likelihood and severity of frontal collisions and it accomplishes this goal by the aid of front-mounted camera and millimeter wave radar, alerts the driver of impending front-end collision and can even apply brakes to help slow the vehicle and avoid a collision.

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Features of The FenSens

The FenSens unit unlike most self-installed collision avoidance accessories does not require external power or  wiring since it is powered by a built-in battery with five-month life span, and every information generated is transmitted wirelessly to the users smartphone. The FenSens comes in two models; The Parking Assist and the Fender Defender. The Parking Assist model, which comes with two sensors, is designed for vehicles with recessed license plates and  has a narrower field of vision. The Fender Defender, on the other hand, is a little bit more pricey than the Parking Assist Model and comes with four ultrasonic sensors, with a range that covers the entire rear end of the car. Both of these models have a range of about 10 feet (3 m), and are IP67 water/dust proof.

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How The FenSens Works

Installation of the Fensens (both models) are done just like regular plate frames, by four security screws, screwed over the license plate and the connections are carried out by Bluetooth Connections to Android or iOS devices. To pair the FenSens device to the users smartphone, the FenSens app is first downloaded, opened and the connection can be instantiated. The app will automatically detect forward movement or backing up processes and will provide alerts by audio(beeps or boops), with visual display and vibration feedback when nearing an object. For safety reasons, the smartphone can be docked using a mobile phone dock with the app opened  or placed in the pocket, as the case may be. Vibration alerts are given if the user forgets to pull out his or her smartphone.

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Demerits

The fact that the user has to monitor his smartphone while driving might reduce focus and situational awareness.

FenSens For All and Sundry

Coupled with the ridiculously cheap price ( $120 for the Parking Assist and $150 for the Fender Defender), the FenSens can be used on any car, new or old model. What this means is that, you do not have to buy an overly expensive state-of-the-art vehicle with inbuilt collision sensory system or purchase pricey online collision avoidance kits to be able to enjoy the benefits of this technology. Based on the stat given by the FenSens team that 15,000 injuries, 1.8 million rear-end accidents and US$7 billion in damages have been caused by back-up accidents due to lack of collision avoidance sensors in about 90 percent of the cars on US roads, the use of this technology would not only prevent accidents but also possibly save lives.

Picture Credit: automobiles.honda.com, gizmag.com, fensens.com

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