Georgia residents may use CarPlay to enhance their infotainment system, but they should know that it comes with safety risks. A study from the road safety charity IAM RoadSmart has found that, contrary to Apple’s claims, CarPlay actually makes drivers more distracted than if they were to use their phones.
The study was based on a driving simulation that 40 people participated in: 20 who used CarPlay and 20 who used Android Auto, a rival to CarPlay. Both groups were asked to travel a certain route three times and to use their respective system’s voice and touch controls during the second and third time.
CarPlay’s voice and touch controls increased reaction times by 36% and 57%, respectively. Android Auto use yielded similar results of 30% and 53%. CarPlay’s touch controls, then, are more dangerous than handheld phones, which make drivers 46% slower to react. Even the voice controls are riskier than texting, which slows reaction times by 35%, hands-free phones, 27%, and being high on marijuana, 21%.
Researchers are not clear as to why CarPlay is more distracting, but it could have something to do with the extra features and the assumption that using large, built-in screens is somehow safer than handheld screens. Apple, known for the built-in safety features on its phones, can do much to boost CarPlay safety.
It should be kept in mind that almost anything, even listening to the radio, can constitute a distraction. Nevertheless, drivers must have control of their vehicles at all times, and if negligence leads to a motor vehicle accident, they will be held liable, or their auto insurance company may have to face a claim. Victims, for their part, may want to prepare themselves for opposition from the insurance company. Victims might consider a legal evaluation before filing a lawsuit.