Andy Rubin wants to give you a free dashcam, in exchange for the data

by: Andrew GrushFebruary 9, 2016

Andy Rubin Forbes

While Andy Rubin is probably best known for his involvement as one of Android’s founders, his ambitions certainly don’t end there. After leaving Google in 2014, Rubin has been involved with a number of projects, including creating his own tech incubator called Playground Global. Rubin has also invested in a number of companies such as CastAR, and is rumored to be working on a return to the mobile game. And now Rubin seems to have his sights set on creating a massive real-time visual map of the world, using dashcams.

In an interview with Wired, Rubin talked a bit about his latest project and how he would like to give away a specialized dashcam to those who signed up to work with his program, and in exchange they would give him the data collected from it. This data would be used to create a map of traffic areas in real-time, allowing drivers to potentially get a much more realistic look at traffic conditions before they headed into these congested areas.

dashcam brownpau

The idea of a service that gives you real-time street views and traffic views sound pretty cool we have to admit, but Rubin doesn’t talk at all about the obstacles that would be involved.

First, there’s the cost of free dashcams. Rubin isn’t exactly the richest man in the world, and so he’d need some pretty big partners to pull off the financials needed. Also, they’d need to convince enough people to use dashcams in order to make the information collected truly useful. More than likely that would mean demoing the program in a select city/region and slowly rolling it out to other areas. Lastly, if the idea is real-time traffic analysis, these dashcams would have to access a mobile network, and that’s a whole other cost to consider.

Barring these potential obstacles, would you be interested in a free dashcam if Rubin was offering? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.


    Is their any audio to the dashcam? That’s a deal breaker right there if so

    • Michael Shorey

      same thinking. but if not then i would be on board.

    • Andrew Grush

      I’d hope not. But.. yah, certainly some potential privacy concerns with his idea.. :)

    • Total_telecom

      Ummm you’d rather use your data?

  • Harvey Davis


  • William Everette


  • Stephen Sharp


  • bigslam123

    I’d definitely be up for it!

  • Mujtaba Munir

    Yes sure !!!

  • Robin Peters


  • Милен Стефанов

    Absolutely NOT- this is literally spying… If you want a dashcam- go to store and get one for $50-60…

  • sraj49

    Ye. I would love to join

  • Benedict

    Another problem is that e.g. in Germany dashcams are mostly prohibited.

    • Милен Стефанов

      Says who? Every year I travel through Germany (at least 4000km.), always use dashcam and every year police fine me for speeding or something else, but NEVER even warned me about using dashcam…

      • Benedict

        So because you are not warned makes you believe it’s allowed? Nice attitude :)
        It was ruled by court in Aug. 2014 in favour of “Datenschutz”.

        • Милен Стефанов

          Thank you… Obviously in german police works fucking morons- in 2015 they had at least 5 chances to tell me “Dude, dashcams are not allowed here according some rule – take it off”…
          Some years ago on Greece border I was warned that radar detectors are baned in the country and even having one in the car (not working) is a problem- literally broke my detector and throw it in a trash… Did I like that rule- NO, did I obey the rule- YES. As a foreigner I need little help for strange laws like this…

  • Michael L

    Im in, email me

  • Mark Washington

    Where can u get one!!! I am all in

  • George Cruz

    Count me in….sounds like a good idea.

  • John Doe

    Nope, I have Waze, and it does just as good a job without me having to watch streaming video of what is going on ahead of me.

    • sithishs

      Well I mean, that’s not really the point of dash cams. Waze is great for avoiding traffic and speed traps but dash cams are more for insurance and liability issues that could arise. I don’t really understand this guy’s point or idea – this isn’t what dash cams are for.

      • John Doe

        I think he wants to add this capabilityoption to having one on your dash..
        I am not sure I get this point either ..
        Insurance, maybe .. but traffic .. Meh .. No

  • Phil Reynolds

    I’m in. Where can you get one?

  • Total_telecom

    Seems interesting I hope to hear more about this

  • Bradley G Hood

    where do I sign…? I use Waze but this sounds intriguing.

  • Jaime

    I’ll take one. He’ll be amazed at what I drive through every day.

  • Sandeep14

    Yes, it’s an interesting project but I would need to know what data was being collected – the company would need to demonstrate transparency in relation to this and allow participants to manage their privacy and data.

  • Sure sign me up, assuming that the deep pockets come from Google. Since Google already has all my personal info what’s one more data set on the road to their global domination. All hail the might Google keeper of all knowledge.

  • Contact me Rubin. All yours.

  • Oliver Cam

    yes count me in :)

  • Ambrosia

    I’d be happy to share in this research

  • Paul M

    My wife and I already have dashcams in our cars and use waze.
    So if the car mounts allowed our phones’ cameras to see the road, we’re most of the way there.