Who do we have to blame for the dashcam craze? The innumerable YouTube videos catching the most incredible utccidents? Those crazy Russians and their penchant for accident fraud? Our mobile, always-on culture? Well, no matter who you blame, you can finally join in on the fun by equipping your own dashcam, the Waylens.
Well, Waylens isn’t exactly a traditional dashcam. This crowdfunded project is more of a smart driving cam, and the creators go out of their way to assert that it is made for fun, not to thwart anyone who flings themselves in front of your car – although we have to imagine that the video may be pretty useful for insurance purposes (a can of worms we’d rather not open at the moment).
First, you need an OBD-II port, which may not sound familiar but won’t be a problem if your car was made in the last couple decades. Second, you need a pre-paired connection with your OBD-II port and the steering wheel remote, which the Waylens happily provides.
After you equip the camera, it sets to work using its various sensors to track your driving. There’s an OLED display that comes with the cam and can even give you your current steering stats. When the camera’s sensors think that something interesting or fast is happening, they turn the cam on and let it shoot some video…which could be awkward when you get in an accident, but it’s better than sticking your smartphone out the window with one hand.
You can search through the videos recorded by the cam, and share them with your friends whenever you want. With the right smartphone brand, you can have one-touch sharing equipped, but there are a whole lot of editing features that everyone can use to get that clip just right before putting it on YouTube.
If you want to get some viral dashcam videos of your own, well, it will cost. The early bird specials are all gone, and you’ll need to pay around $300 to order one of your own. The cams are expected to ship in mid-2016, although by then there’s a decent chance that new American car models will also be offering dashcams of their own. Competition, anyone?