USAA seeks patent to let your phone cut you off if it senses you are drunk
The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has published an application from the United Services Automobile Association (USAA) for ‘Transaction management based on sensor data,’ which may be biometrics, to assess a device user’s ‘physical, emotional and/or intellectual state.’
Potential biometrics gathered by a device such as a smartphone or wearable and used by the system would include face and voice print as well as a number of health patterns such as heart rate, oxygen levels, body temperature and even brain waves, according to the patent filing.
Constraints or conditions on certain actions could be set, such as delaying a purchase if its exceeds a personal budget.
Devices could record intoxication, anger, depression, dementia, exhaustion and other conditions. They could carry sensors including video and still cameras and microphones. The device camera could make judgments about the wearer emotional status based on eye movement, the state of their hair and dress attire, etc. The patent specifically mentions analyzing face stubble, fingernail grunge and the unexpected wearing of pajamas.
But the insurance and financial services giant also sees a guardian-like role for the system. Sensing the wearers is drunk or high, the software might stop a transaction until sobriety returns or even call for backup from a designated clear-thinker.