Uber Wants to Use AI to Know When You’re Drunk

Through monitoring your time, place, and amount of typos, Uber is trying to keep its drivers and passengers more safe!

Uber wants to use artificial intelligence to know how fucked up you are before getting a ride.

A patent application shows the ride-sharing app filed a patent for AI technology that could potentially detect if the user of the app is intoxicated. How could it know that you ask? Well, the AI would use an algorithm to determine if you’re using the app differently than normal. It would make note of: typos, if you’re walking slower or staggering more than usual, and the location and time that you’re requesting a ride. So, if the app sees you brutally misspell the name of your own street near a bar in Times Square at 2:30 in the morning, it will know that you’re probably drunk.

And, what does Uber plan to do with that information? They’re not spelling it out just yet, but the patent application says they’re trying to “reduce undesired consequences of uncharacteristic user states.” For example, drunk passengers can be a lot to deal with. They can be belligerent, messy, or unhelpful when giving directions. Uber could utilize that information to pair them with appropriate drivers or prevent them from getting an Uber Pool which places them with other passengers. There is no comprehensive data available, but plenty of Uber drivers have made complaints about being assaulted by intoxicated passengers.

As the popularity of ride-sharing apps has risen, so has the option of using them as a de facto designated driver, and that’s a good thing. But, Uber has to make sure that the passengers who rely on their service will be safe. Some Uber drivers have floated the idea that they should be paid more for picking up drunk passengers since they can often be a hassle to deal with. Though, that could lead a drunk passenger to try really hard to act sober to avoid extra charges.

What do you guys think? Would you want Uber to know when you’ve had too much to drink? Let us know in the comments, or on Twitter at @WhatsTrending.