You drank too much? To say it could be the smartphone, analyzing your gait. The idea is sprung to a group of researchers from the University of Pittsburgh led by professor Brian Suffoletto, that they made it a study, published in the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs.

The sample, of course, is reduced, but the result is still significant: the researchers recruited 22 participants aged between 21 and 43 years, and have administered them with an alcohol-based vodka and lime each time, until you have reached the limit beyond which it is illegal to get behind the wheel of a car in the USA and in the Uk, ie 80 mg alcohol per 100 ml of blood.

At the same time, they have asked the guinea pigs to bond a smartphone to the back and, every two hours, walk back and forth in a straight line in ten steps. The result was remarkably accurate: in 90% of cases, the researchers were able to identify people over the limit thanks to the changes of gait are highlighted by the sensors of the smartphone.

As explained by professor Suffoletto to the BBC, it was to perceive a new use for something that most of the people, there the port is already below every day, as well as demonstrate a link between the Apple Watch and health, and the rumor on the sensors of the Airpods next-generation:

“Every day we carry with us of the sensors is very powerful, wherever we go, thanks to our smartphones. We need to learn how to best use them, by putting them to the service of the public utility. During college I lost a dear friend because of an accident in a state of intoxication, and as a medical emergency, I take care every day to people with injuries due to alcohol intoxication acute. Therefore, in the last ten years I have searched for solutions, even digital, that could prevent these events.”

The study does not specify if they were used in Android devices or the iPhone, but for sure it is flagship products, the mounting of the accelerometers of the high-end. Scholars hope to continue on this path with further experiments to understand how they can work well, the sensors in situations less than ideal, such as, for example, when the smartphone is in your pocket.

The goal, concluded dr. Suffoletto, is to develop a system that can send alerts to the user of the smartphone that is in a state of intoxication, asking, for example, not driving:

“In five years time I’d like to imagine a world where if people go out with friends and they drink too much, they receive an alert from their smartphone at the first signs of drunkenness, together with a series of strategies to help them stop drinking and protect them from accidents on the driving, but also by violent events and unprotected sex”.