Thursday, 15 December 2016 09:42

SnapSkan checks your tyres as you drive

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A Finland-based tyre company is offering a system that automatically measures your tyres' tread depth.

Nokian Tyres and its Vianor retail subsidiary has begun installing drive-over scanners that can automatically measure the tread depth of tyres, optionally sending a report to the driver via SMS or email.

The SnapSkan system was developed in collaboration with Finnish companies Futurice and Affecto, and uses 3D scanning technology patented by UK-based Sigmavision.

A camera is used to capture the car's registration plate in order to match the scan with a specific vehicle.

The first deployment of the SnapSkan system will be on an access road to an underground car park in Helsinki.

Additional SnapSkans will be installed around the country in the near future, eventually including all Vianor outlets. The company plans to extend the service to other countries in the coming years.

According to a study cited by the company, about 25% of tyre related accidents occur because the tyre's tread depth is below the minimum level.

"It is our job to make our roads and environment safer," said Nokian Tyres president and chief executive Ari Lehtoranta.

"Our company's roots stretch back to 1898, and we have been at the forefront since then, providing a range of products and services related to road-users' safety. We launched the world's first winter tyre, and now we are launching the first service to report to motorists on tyre safety directly by email or text message."

Automobile and Touring Club of Finland communications manager Jukka Tolvanen said "It is great that digital innovations are hitting the market and making drivers' lives easier while improving safety. The Automobile and Touring Club of Finland considers it important that new services like this are developed. This technology from Nokian Tyres also enables freedom of choice and cost-efficiency – it does not require equipment to be installed in cars at great expense."

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Stephen Withers

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Stephen Withers is one of Australia¹s most experienced IT journalists, having begun his career in the days of 8-bit 'microcomputers'. He covers the gamut from gadgets to enterprise systems. In previous lives he has been an academic, a systems programmer, an IT support manager, and an online services manager. Stephen holds an honours degree in Management Sciences and a PhD in Industrial and Business Studies.

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