California has kick-started trials of the digital license plates as a part of a pilot project that allows drivers to add a message beneath the number on the plate provided the message is approved by Department of Motor vehicles. California is the first state to roll out these digital number plates.
These plates are manufactured by Reviver Auto, a California based startup and feature an e-ink display. The digital display of the number plates is quite easily visible in bright sunlight and enables the driver to change the message being displayed.
These digital number plates comprise of their own battery, GPS receiver and also offer wireless connectivity. This latter system enables drivers to renew their registration without visiting the Department of Motor Vehicles office or attach registration stickers to their plates.
The best part about these new digital plates is that they have an automated system to display “STOLEN” on the display if the vehicle gets stolen. This makes it easier for the police to track the vehicle and difficult for criminals to get away with stealing the vehicle.
If someone in California intends to buy these license plates, they can get them through car dealerships as they are not available through state’s Department of Motor Vehicles. According to the Department of Motor Vehicles, there are 116 units being used at present.
Many questions are being raised regarding privacy and security such as a few drivers have raised the concern that will this device communication system allow law enforcement bodies to track movements of the driver.
The founder of Reviver Auto says that these digital license plates are particularly helpful for the business owners as they can use the digital displays to advertise their offerings when the vehicle is not moving.
The city Government of Sacramento ordered 24 digital license plates and have been delivered to these plates while consumer sales are scheduled to start on 1st of June.
The digital license plates cost US $699 per month along with a monthly fee of US $7. Would you buy a digital license plate if it was available in Pakistan and cost you around 80,000 PKR.