People buy dash cams for a lot of different reasons, especially since they’ve dropped in price and exploded in popularity over the last few years. Sometimes, you have a concerned parent looking after a teenage driver who just wants to make sure they’re practicing the safest possible driving methods at all times. Likewise, dash cams are also commonly used for the purposes of fleet management from a business perspective. Many people just want to make sure that if something happens in front of their car — like a fight breaks out or a meteor streaks by in the sky — they’ve got the footage to back up the story they’ll enthusiastically tell their friends later.

Hidden Camera

But if you had to make a list of the major reasons why people make an effort to invest in dash cam technology, “security” would undoubtedly be right at the top. This is exactly the need one company is hoping to fill with Raven, a piece of equipment that combines a security camera with an onboard diagnostics and vehicle information system in one easy-to-use product. Indeed, Raven may very well be the security-focused dash cam you’ve been looking for because of a wide range of different features that are definitely worth exploring.

The Raven Dash Cam: Breaking It Down

Though a lot of dash cams are marketed to consumers under the guise of being safety products, Raven has a number of options that make it clear that this is absolutely one of the top priorities of its manufacturers. In addition to a major emphasis on vehicle security, Raven also includes a sophisticated GPS system, dashboard telemetry options and even an inward-facing camera — all in a device that is roughly the size of an Xbox Kinect or a modest sound bar for your home entertainment system.

Using the aforementioned systems, Raven can automatically send an alert to your smartphone to tell you exactly where your car is parked, for example — you don’t have to worry about losing your vehicle in that crowded mall parking lot ever again. However, the alerts don’t stop there. You’ll also get an instant notification if some type of perceived security event happens — like if your car is moved or bumped, if one of the car doors is opened, if glass is smashed nearby, etc.

Using the connected smartphone app, you can also see real-time vehicle telemetry information at a moment’s notice. This includes but is not limited to things like the current speed of your vehicle, the direction it’s headed in, the RPM of the engine and more. Not only is this a great way for a parent to keep an eye on their teenage driver, but it will all become critical information in the event that your car is stolen.

But where Raven really shines has to do with the inward-facing camera — something that most dash cameras do not offer. If your car HAS unfortunately been stolen, you can pull up a feed of the inside of the car right from your smartphone — snapping a picture of the perpetrator at the exact same time. You also get a complete history for all of your trips and the ability to download clips based on certain events that occurred or places that you’ve visited.

Though Raven doesn’t officially go on sale until May, it’s easy to see why it’s already become a very popular choice among security-focused drivers across the country. When Raven becomes available on store shelves near you, it will retail for a modest price of $299. However, you can also save $30 if you pre-order from the manufacturer immediately. Likewise, it’s important to note that there are three required subscription service plans for you to choose from to access all of Raven’s features — including the “always on” LTE mobile networking service. These plans range in price from $8 per month to $32 per month depending on the length of the plan, the features you need and other factors.