Few of us, however, go on to develop that idea into a functioning system. But, that seems not to be the case with the safety engineers at Honda.
The Japanese car maker has a heritage in vehicle safety innovation that many other manufacturers can only envy. With devices such as their Foward Collision Warning system and Lane Departure Warning system – which determines when a driver is making a lane departure without indication – you have to say that Honda is serious about safety. But airbags for a smartphone? Really? Well, a new video uploaded by Honda to Youtube appears indicate that this is the case.
Ostensibly the brainchild of a Honda safety engineer, a new system, known as Smartphone Case N, is shown in the video. Over a sombre piano soundtrack, which hints at the personal loss that a damaged smartphone can bring, the Japanese technician develops the perfect solution. In the video, the engineer is shown testing various ideas that are designed to protect his phone from being damaged when dropped. He is even shown testing the extent of the damage caused by dropping smarpthones from the top of a building.
The Honda engineer eventually comes up with the idea for the Case N, after being inspired by airbag technology used in Honda’s vehicles, and tests out various prototypes. The final version uses carbon dioxide canisters which inflate six separate airbags around his handheld electronic device within a split second of a fall being detected. This gizmo is then held up to the camera and filmed in slow-motion footage which shows the airbags deploying, saving the device from any damage as it hits the floor.
Unfortunately, the Smartphone Case N is not likely to be available in the UK in the near future. This is because the fun device is actually down to the marketing team at Honda rather than their real safety engineers. The miniature airbag system is – in fact – part of a novel promotion for a number of their new cars.
All new cars made by Honda are equipped with similarly sophisticated airbag technology that can match anything the Smartphone Case N can do. For instance, new models are all fitted with dual stage and multiple threshold front airbags These safety devices are designed to deploy at slightly differing rates depending on the severity of a crash as well as other factors, such as the car occupants’ seat belt usage. Front fitted airbags are engineered by Honda to supplement seat belts and to help reduce the likelihood and severity of upper body injuries following head on collisions. Who knows? They might even help to protect your smartphone, in the event of a traffic accident, too.