While the phone can be extremely useful during car rides such as for navigation or music, it is also one of the leading causes of road accidents around the world. While countries have made it illegal to drive and use the phone, many drivers, especially those who are younger, still regularly use their phone during car rides to text or make phone calls. In order to curb these temptations and reduce phone usage, this article discusses ways in which users can stop themselves from using their phone while driving.
Using Google Assistant and Siri
Although Google Assistant and Siri are features that are synonymous with automating many tasks, it is most applicable for drivers who may need to use their phone. For example, with these voice assistant tools, users are able to send texts, have texts read to them, and even check their emails, all while keeping their eyes on the road and hands on the steering wheel. As nearly all functions can be accessed with Google Assistant and Siri, they are tools that are highly recommended for those who wish to use their phone during their drive without having to compromise road safety while doing so.
Dedicated Car Apps
Even without having to touch the phone, users can get a higher degree of control through dedicated car apps such as Android Auto (Android) and Apple CarPlay (iOS). Through these apps, users can access many of the features on their device without having to dedicate a significant amount of attention to the phone for greater driving concentration. Through Android Auto, the interface is made such that only the essentials are on the screen and is more tailored than with Google Assistant. For example, users can say “OK Google” at which point they will be able to access different forms of media, maps, and even get messages. For Apple CarPlay, users can integrate the phone with most major cars at which point they will be able to control different apps as well as functions on the vehicle with just their voice. For example, users are able to use Siri to activate the map, messages, or podcasts without having to touch their phone and maintain attention on the road. What makes the app unique compared to other car-based apps is that users can integrate their phone with the vehicle for a more continuous experience, making it highly recommended for iOS users. In having these features, users no longer need to touch their phone but can simply say their commands verbally while the apps can perform their function for a safer driving experience.
One of the best methods to ensure safe driving is for users to be able to be accountable if others are able to see if a user is distracted. With this, TrueMotion Family Safe Driving is an app that lets family members see whether others are distracted while driving. For example, family members are able to see where other members in the family members are driving to and whether or not they have engaged in distracted driving. While the app does not directly prevent distracted driving, users know that others will see if they have been distracted and hence are deterred from driving while using their phone. With this, those who wish to monitor the driving habits of family members are suggested to utilize the app to ensure that no members of their family are driving while using their mobile device.
One of the best apps that can be used to actually prevent distracted driving is LifeSaver which automatically detects when a user has started driving and then limits access to the phone so that users are not tempted to utilize the device. For example, when the app determines that users have started driving, they are only able to make emergency calls or have a passenger unlock it. Furthermore, users can track their record of distracted driving as the app tracks the history of driving time, number of unlocks, and the amount of time that a user has spent driving. With these metrics, drivers can tell how many times they have been distracted while on the road and work towards preventing distracted driving in the future.
In-App version of How it works video with ‘iPhone Only’ In-Drive notice
A new method that can be used to reduce the instances of distracted driving is to use Motovate which lets drivers accumulate points and then redeem them for real prizes once enough points have been collected. When users take a trip without being distracted by their device, they are able to earn points while those who get distracted by checking their device are not able to gain any points. Through this mechanism, users have real incentives to practice safer driving habits to not only gain points and redeem prices, but also to ensure a greater degree of safety while driving.
For those who are looking for different solutions that can help them reduce the amount of phone usage that is required during a commute, the apps and tools listed in this article are able to do so. From voice assistant tools on both the iOS and Android devices to dedicated apps which reduce the amount of physical interactions that must be taken to complete tasks, users can reduce instances of distracted driving while still being able to complete the tasks that they wish to do.