In-cabin driver monitoring is the future of both car safety and convenience

Driver Monitoring System technology will likely enable incredible leaps forward in terms of driver convenience and safety -- whether the drivers want it or not.

 Cipia DMS can be used to identify a driver and their passengers (photo credit: CIPIA)
Cipia DMS can be used to identify a driver and their passengers
(photo credit: CIPIA)

If you’ve ever wished you were more like David Hasselhoff’s Knight Rider, you’re in luck. Recent advancements in Artificial Intelligence and automotive manufacturing regulations are about to bring your car one step closer to KITT.

Your curly-haired dream is coming true thanks to the advent and gradual integration of Driver Monitoring Systems (DMS) into modern cars.

DMS for safety

DMS technology uses sensors and cameras to monitor driver behavior, and alert them if they become distracted or drowsy. The system can detect when the driver's eyes are off the road, their head is nodding or their posture indicates drowsiness and can also detect if the driver is using a phone or engaged in any other activity that takes their attention away from driving.

Many drivers might balk at the idea of their car watching them to see if they make mistakes, and while they wouldn’t opt-in to the function of their own volition, recent advancements in regulation may prevent them from making that choice for themselves.

“As a driver, I know when I'm bad. I don't need anyone to tell me when I'm bad. And I wouldn't necessarily pay for a system that tells me when I choose to be bad,” said Tal Krzypow, VP Product at Cipia. “What has really been pushing the market and causing adoption is that it's not a decision by drivers for drivers. This is a regulatory decision that has already been made.”

 Tal Krzypow, VP Product at Cipia (credit: CIPIA) Tal Krzypow, VP Product at Cipia (credit: CIPIA)

Cipia is an Israel-based AI computer vision solutions provider whose platform is being integrated by 7 car manufacturers around the world due to its advanced accuracy. Most recently, the company announced last week that it has been chosen by a US EV carmaker that intends to implement Cipia’s DMS technology in an upcoming SUV model.

According to Krzypow, regulators around the world, and particularly in Europe, are leaning hard into DMS implementation.

“As of July 2026, no new vehicle can be registered for traffic on European soil without a distraction and drowsiness monitoring system installed in the vehicle, period,” he said, noting that new safety standards will require highly-accurate DMS that can detect even minute eye adjustments.

“These kinds of motions are what pushes the market for a wide adoption of driver monitoring,” Krzypow said.

DMS for cool stuff

While vehicle safety is DMS’ primary use case, it also opens up a host of opportunities for quality of life and driver convenience features.

One of the most apparent examples is made possible by facial recognition technology, which Krzypow explained can be used by manufacturers to keep track of who’s driving the car and make an automatic adjustment to suit that user’s preferences.

“You can personalize anything: from seating positions to mirror positions to volume level, even temperature level,” he said, noting that even more scenarios are made possible by DMS’ ability to detect other vehicle occupants.

Such possible scenarios implemented by manufacturers in the future might include turning off the AC on your wife’s side when she gets in the car, moving your tall friend’s seat back so that your view of the side mirror isn’t blocked by his knees or blasting hype music on your way to your daughter’s Judo class.

“By knowing who is in the car, you can automatically suggest certain settings,” Krzypow said. “Everything can be served automatically, and your needs can be predicted to simply provide a better experience.”

Unfortunately, there is a downside to all of this exciting futurism: those driving older cars, such as a grey 2011 Nissan Tiida for example, will find themselves losing sleep as they only imagine the next generation of vehicular convenience made possible by modern technology.