Cobra Updates iRadar With User Info Sharing

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CHICAGO —

Cobra Electronics is updating its iRadar app to include social-media sharing capabilities, the company told TWICE.

The free app, which was introduced last year for iPhones and Android-based smartphones, now lets users enter information using their smartphones to alert other drivers in real time about impending speed traps and other road activity.

Drivers will receive alerts from other iRadar users who are roughly 10 miles from them.

The Cobra iRadar Community will let users share real-time alerts for such things as police activity, dangerous intersections and accidents. When a user shares information, the info will go up to the Cloud and then down to other iRadar users in the area, said Chris Kooistra, Cobra marketing services director.

The full enhancement will roll out in early to mid-September as a free upgrade to the existing app.

The app currently provides the locations of red-light cameras, speed cameras, dangerous intersections, and speed traps, which show up as red circular icons on the map screen of the smartphone. User-reported locations that Cobra has not verified show up as green squares.

To verify user-generated reports, Cobra initiates the following process: “If user reports are confirmed by multiple users, our team will flag the location for verification,” Kooistra explained. “If we confirm it, we will add the location to our Aura database, and the alert will show up as a red icon on the screen instead of a green one.”

Users will also be able to flag entries as real or false, and the app will use the feedback to adjust the significance of the report and when they should expire. “For example,” Kooistra said, “a live-police report will be displayed for only a short period of time because police move around, but a red-light camera report will be more or less permanent.”

Cobra is very happy with the success of iRadar, Kooistra said. It has been downloaded 86,000 times by iPhone users and 76,000 times by Android users, according to the company, which will be running new web and print ads to announce the enhancement.

The iRadar Community is somewhat similar to the

SpeedTrapUSA.com

website that Escort rolled out earlier this year. That database also collects user-shared info about speed traps, but updates are downloaded from Escort’s website rather than operating as an app.

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