Smartphone application company Green Driver created EnLighten, an app that measures the duration of red lights and chimes just before lights turn green.
The app—available for iOS and Android—uses live, city-issued traffic data, a GPS and an accelerometer to estimate how long red lights will last once cars stop. In addition to a visual countdown, a voice announces the estimated wait time, allowing drivers to take their eyes off the traffic lights.
Nine cities, including Salt Lake City, Las Vegas and Portland, Ore., have signed up to send the app traffic feeds. Some cities, such as Las Vegas and San Jose, Calif., are hoping to keep the app in test phase until more data is collected. The app’s creator hopes 50 cities will sign up by the end of 2014.
Green Driver also hopes automakers will purchase the technology, which would allow the system to be built into cars.