Apple’s self-driving car technology could potentially change the way it drives based on the reactions of its passengers, using monitoring sensors to analyze the vehicle’s occupants and determine an appropriate driving style to suit the situation, potentially reducing the chance of a passenger panicking. The patent application for “Comfort Profiles,” filed with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office in March but published on Thursday, describes how an autonomous driving and navigation system can move through an environment, with motion governed by a number of factors that are set indirectly by the passengers of the vehicle.
A sensor device located at the front of the vehicle’s cabin could potentially monitor some or all of the people in a car, which could be used to identify individuals. These internal sensors can include light-scanning devices like LIDAR, depth cameras, and infrared sensors to collect the data, which is then passed on to the driving system. […]