Dash cam usage has rapidly increased in recent years as more people are realising the benefits of having dash cam footage when something goes unexpectedly wrong. The sudden rise in demand for these devices has also facilitated an advance in the technology that these cameras have to offer. 

There are several features that can be found in almost all dash cams, including the ability to turn itself on when it detects that your car ignition has started and the capacity to record audio. Most dash cams also have a G-Sensor that can detect high impact and a photo function that allows the dashboard camera to be used as a fully functional still image camera. There is also a common function that will automatically save recorded footage and protect it from being overwritten when the SD card’s memory runs out.

However, the most noticeable improvements are the ones that have been made to the more premium dash cams. Here are 13 features that have been added to higher-end dash cam models. 

1.A Higher Recording Resolution: Higher quality dash cams can record in 4K Ultra HD resolution and have easy-to-use touch screens. 

2.Wi-Fi & Bluetooth: Wi-Fi ensures the easy transfer of footage directly from a dash cam to a smartphone, tablet or computer when it’s connected to a wireless internet connection. This is more advanced than various other dash cams that would require downloading the footage onto a computer. Bluetooth also facilitates the smooth transfer of footage from the camera to a mobile device, sometimes automatically.

3.Voice Control: This function allows users to speak to their dash cam with basic instructions, including asking it to start and stop recording, and requesting it to send footage to the device that it is paired with. Some dash cams even come with Alexa and include all functions that one would have with their Alexa at home. 

4.Emergency SOS: There are dash cams that have integrated what3words into their system in order to provide an accurate location based on a worldwide resolution of three metres, even when offline. This allows Emergency Services to find you even if you are in an area with no reception. It can also alert paramedics to a location, as well as providing the driver’s medical history, blood type, and allergies.

5.Parking Mode: this puts the camera into a type of hibernation that stops it from draining the battery but will allow it to automatically turn on if it detects impact while a car is parked. It will activate a recording and allow the user to see what has happened to their car while it was unattended.

6.Slow Motion: Some dash cams can now provide footage in Super Slow Motion at 1080p and 120fps. This can help to identify the potential causes of an accident and can capture number plates and other vital details that could provide essential proof of what happened. 

7.Front and Rear Dash Cams: These cameras give you all-around footage, creating recordings of the road both in front and behind the car. This has proven to be incredibly useful in rear-endings, as that is one of the key aspects missing from a classic front-facing dash cam. 

8.Night Vision & Extreme Weather Mode: Night Vision gives dash cams the ability to record all vital details, even on the darkest roads. These cameras can automatically detect light levels and successfully enhance the image as it’s being recorded. Extreme Weather Mode will use built-in algorithms to provide clear images, even in the case of mist, fog, or other dangerous weather conditions.

9.Built-in Polarising Filter: This feature is designed to significantly reduce windscreen glare and record sharper images in direct sunlight. 

10.Speed Camera Alerts: Some dash cams can pick up on speed camera locations and will provide a convenient reminder when the car is approaching one.

11.Fatigue and Low Light Alerts: A fatigue alert sounds simple but could save a life. This feature reminds you to take a break if it senses that you have been driving for a specific amount of time without taking a break. The Low Light Alert is feature that reminds you to turn on your headlights when it detects that the light levels are too low for high quality camera footage. 

12.IR (Infrared) LEDs: These are triggered by a light sensor and drastically improve the image recording quality of footage of the inside of the vehicle and of the road.

13.Ability to Record 10-Second HD Clips: Certain dash cam brands will record 10-second HD clips immediately after detecting an impact and will lock the camera and simultaneously upload the video to a cloud server via 4G or 5G.

In addition, there are also a number of potential future developments on the cards, including built-in dash cams, which can already be found in many automated cars, and the possibility of making sensor data actionable. This would mean having the ability to analyse dash cam footage in real-time on the cloud rather than having to wait for the camera to be connected to a device to recover key information. 

Dash cam technology seems to improve drastically every year, and because of the rising demand, there are dash cams available for every budget and preference. The price of a dash cam can range anywhere from £25 to more than £400 and these handy cameras are mounted onto the dashboard or windscreen and are powered through a car’s12v power source or by hardwiring the device to the power supply. Most cameras use a loop recording system to film in segments which are stored on a micro-SD card. When the card is full it records over the oldest clip, ensuring that the camera will never miss a critical moment.  

Dash cam usage is likely to grow even further in the future and could become integrated more with other automotive systems. Increased advancements would benefit most users and could help to ensure even higher levels of safety on the roads.