Developers of smartphone speedcam app Speedcam Anywhere have reported abuse by drivers, forcing them to remain anonymous.

The app’s founder told the Guardian newspaper, the team received “some pretty abusive emails” and said he had become “a Marmite product” that some people see as a step towards a “surveillance state”.

> New smartphone app allowing the public to submit evidence of speeding

Currently available on Google Play StoreWith an iOS version due soon, Speedcam Anywhere uses AI to analyze video and report violations to the police.

Although currently unable to prompt speeding drivers to be ticketed, as the algorithm has not been endorsed by the Home Office, meaning it is not legally from a speed camera, 20’s Plenty For Us road safety campaign director Rod King said the app will be “transformational”.

But, now facing abuse from disgruntled road users, the app’s founder said they had been pressured into anonymity.

“We get some pretty abusive emails,” they said. “It’s a Marmite product – some people think it’s a good idea, others think it turns us into a surveillance state.

“I can see both sides of this, but I think if you’re going to have speed limits, then it’s the law that you obey them, and you have to enforce the law. It’s not a personal vendetta against whoever it is just – how do we make our roads safe? There are 20,000 serious injuries on the roads every year – how do we reduce them? And the way we reduce them is to deter speeding.

The app received few reviews on the Google Play Store due to connection issues (apparently resolved after the update) and concerns about the in-app purchase price to buy photo credits .

However, other critics criticize the very idea of ​​a smartphone radar: “In East Germany, citizens were encouraged to report their neighbors to the Stasi, even for the smallest societal offence. ‘Congratulations’ for I’ve created a modern version of this. If you couldn’t tell, I’m being sarcastic. This app disgusts me.

The creator of Speedcam Anywhere claims that the app simply automates the process of reviewing submissions.

“What we’ve done is extend the kind of capabilities of dashcam systems, so you can automate the forensic video analysis that dashcams already do. So instead of a human watching a video for determine the violation, we have created software that automates the process,” they continued.

“I think this is a step in the larger journey of how we make our roads safer and more accessible to everyone.

“Having roads too dangerous for children to cycle to school, roads too dangerous for parents to let their children cross – I think that’s wrong, and society has to get over it. Give back safer roads, make them less unpleasant, and then we can start looking at how else we can get around.”

Addressing the fact that the app cannot currently be used to certify speeding tickets, the founder said he hopes widespread use of the app will at least alert officers to speeding hotspots. speed and encourage action to prevent dangerous driving.

An iOS version of the app has yet to be approved by Apple, which the app developers find confusing: “We don’t know why they would block useful technology, something that could save lives.”

Plenty For Us 20s director King praised the premise of the app, saying it will “be a game-changer in speed limit enforcement”.

“It allows police forces to align with community needs for compliance without placing an increased burden on police. We expect it to be welcomed by anyone who wants to make our communities more safe,” he said.