New solution goes beyond just recording footage to provide active help when required

>> Key differentiator is a service backed by a service center for objective monitoring and potential escalation to emergency services.

>> Device designed specifically for rideshare drivers.

>> Bosch sensors, AI and connectivity expertise enable RideCare companion feature set.

>> RideCare companion built on Bosch experience in emergency calls and security solutions.

Stuttgart, Germany / Las Vegas, NV, USA – To experience the benefits of ride-hailing in the shared economy, there is a shared accountability between driver and rider for a comfortable vehicle experience. To enable transparency and provide objectivity in the case of disputes, Bosch is introducing a new safety enhancement for ridesharing called RideCare companion.

RideCare companion is a connected smart camera for use by rideshare drivers that provides monitoring and transparency for ride-hailing. The solution enables accountability for both the driver and rider to deter unwanted behavior during ride-hailing experiences and enables fast, appropriate responses when there is an issue.

While the vast majority of rideshare trips are without incident, safety reports from rideshare industry leaders reported a relevant number of assaults over a several year period, even as ridesharing was down during the pandemic.

"What takes the Bosch RideCare companion beyond a simple dashcam is that it is paired with a service that provides active help by trained service center specialists when required," said Christoph Hartung, president of Cross-Domain Computing Solutions for Bosch.

The product, which was introduced for the first time at the CES® 2023, was honored as a CES® 2023 Innovation Awards Best of Innovation honoree in the In-Vehicle Entertainment & Safety category.

Rideshare drivers can drive easy knowing that all rides are monitored via the RideCare companion solution and uploaded securely to the cloud in case of events triggered. A lighting element on the front of the RideCare companion device lets drivers and riders know the service is active, creating peace-of-mind and a deterrence effect.

"As automated ride-share services continue to emerge, a solution like RideCare companion becomes even more relevant for passenger transparency and safety," Hartung said.

Designed for rideshare drivers

RideCare companion was designed with the needs of rideshare drivers at the forefront. Drivers seek timely and objective resolutions to potential disputes that might occur in the vehicle so they can maintain their reputation and be able to achieve their desired volume of rides by moving to the next ride.

To ensure the solution fits into the rideshare driver experience, Bosch is collaborating with Gridwise, a leading business app for rideshare and delivery drivers, to perform user research and validate product-market-fit. Gridwise provides insights to rideshare and delivery drivers to help them maximize their earnings and track their business performance all in one place.

Data from RideCare companion is handled securely from end-to-end. Data is encrypted on the device and securely stored in the cloud. Video data is documented with location and timestamp and can be used as proof in case of disputes. For both drivers and riders, data is handled according to the applicable data privacy regulations. Additionally, the device has multiple tamper-resistance features to support on-going operation during rides and uploading of ride data.


Sensors enable safety

The device features a number of sensors for monitoring of shared rides. An interior and exterior camera provide visibility – especially during the nighttime – to both the interior and exterior of the vehicle.

Bosch expertise in sensor fusion using audio, video and inertial measurement unit data along with the use of artificial intelligence to analyze the data enables the detection of aspects such as the start and stop of a ride to enable better management of footage.

The device also provides active health checks, including tamper detection and alerts. Intelligent algorithms can recognize and send an alert if the field-of-view of the device is compromised or blocked.

Accompanying the RideCare companion device is a wireless SOS button in the vehicle that the driver can press to activate an emergency call to a Bosch service center. As long as the vehicle is within range of mobile connectivity, trained emergency call operators are available live 24/7 and can look into the vehicle upon receipt of a call. A trained Bosch agent is able to access a camera view from the RideCare companion device to determine if emergency services need to be contacted. Service centers supporting RideCare companion are trained to make informed decisions from an objective view when reviewing a situation flagged by the driver.

RideCare companion brings together expertise across Bosch

The key differentiator for Bosch RideCare companion is the service backed by the service center who can provide active help in appropriate situations. Bosch is a pioneer in the area of eCall services with more than 10 years of experience. Bosch eCall solutions backed by Bosch service centers are on more than 27 million vehicles from 15 brands globally. The company has processed more than 11 million eCalls since 2012.

Bosch also has a long history in security. The Bosch division Building Technologies is a leading global supplier of security, safety, and communications products and systems. Its product portfolio includes video security and intrusion detection.

RideCare companion is the next solution from Bosch for the sharing economy. In 2021, the company introduced RideCare insight, which enables smoke, damage and harsh driving detection for shared vehicles. Both highlight the company’s use of sensors and connected devices to create Internet of Things solutions for its customers.

CES 2024