Soon, smartphones may be able to detect cannabis intoxication.
Using accelerometers, such as those used in GPS systems, it may soon be possible to determine if someone is high on marijuana with over 90 percent accuracy.
In a reserch paper published in the journal Drug and Alcohol Dependence, researchers from Rutgers Institute for Health, Health Care Policy, and Aging Research in New Jersey have demonstrated that cannabis intoxication can be detected using existing sensors in most smartphones.
“By using sensors in a person’s phone, it is possible to deliver a brief intervention to reduce cannabis’ harmful effects when a person is experiencing intoxication,” said Tammy Chung, lead author of the study and professor of psychiatry at Rutgers University.
The research has shown that people under the influence of cannabis have reduced performance, slower response times, and impaired driving behavior. As a result of driving under the influence of cannabis, several road accidents have resulted in fatalities and injuries.
Measures to detect marijuana use have severe limitations in most cases. Urine, blood, and saliva tests are often time-consuming and labor-intensive.
To determine whether smartphone sensors could be used to detect episodes of cannabis intoxication, researchers examined daily data collected from young adults who reported using cannabis at least twice a week. They determined using continuous smartphone sensor data and smartphone time features-used to determine the time of day and day of the week-which sensors are most useful in the detection of cannabis intoxication.
Researchers found that time features could detect cannabis intoxication by over 60 percent in self-reported cases, while a combination of time features and other sensor data could detect it by over 90 percent.
According to self-reported cases, GPS data and accelerometer data were the most effective smartphone sensors for detecting cannabis intoxication.