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The BMW EnLighten App Predicts Traffic Light Changes

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Impatient drivers know that horrible scenario all too well — in which every traffic light they hit turns red, just when they happen to be in a hurry. But if you drive a BMW, you may be able to avoid that, thanks to a new app that lets you know what the upcoming traffic signals are, helping you find the fastest route.

The German automaker is the first to integrate an app that predicts when traffic lights are green, allowing drivers to avoid red lights.

The EnLighten app was created by the company Connected Signals and runs through BMW's iDrive infotainment system.

Available for iOS, the app shows the status of the nearest traffic signal ahead on the iDrive screen in the car, along with a countdown that shows when the signal will change. It also gives audio alerts to inform the driver when the light they're approaching is about to change.

Not only can it predict traffic light changes, EnLighten also analyzes the speed and position of the car to determine if the driver should stop at the upcoming light, or if they have enough time to safely cross the intersection.

At traffic lights specific to left- and right-hand turns, the app registers that the driver is planning to turn after they use the turn signal, so the app can analyze and direct them accordingly.

Not only can EnLighten help impatient drivers better plan their routes to avoid red lights, the app will also help increase gas mileage by reducing the constant braking and acceleration. Plus, it also has a positive effect on the environment as there will be less gas burned along the way.

EnLighten is compatible with all new BMW models that feature the BMW Apps option. But not every BMW driver will be lucky enough to utilize it. The app only works in cities that have an integrated network of traffic lights. At present, that's just three cities: Portland and Eugene in Oregon and Salt Lake City, Utah. More cities will however be added in the future, including Las Vegas, Arcadia and Walnut Creek in California, and Christchurch, New Zealand.

EnLighten is a standalone app that is available to download for free in the AppStore.

Via: Ars Technica

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