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Will the New iPhone Update Curb Distracted Driving?
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Will the New iPhone Update Curb Distracted Driving?

Smartphones have been quickly evolving, with companies trying to compete by boasting about new features and conveniences with each iteration. These features make it continually easier to connect to others and get information while we are on the go. Unfortunately, this also means that people are using these features while they are driving, which only increases the already significant problem of distracted driving in the United States, including in South Carolina.

However, Apple recently rolled out a feature in an iPhone system update that actually aims to make the roads safer by curbing distracted driving. The feature is called “Do Not Disturb While Driving,” and it is available when you update to iOS 11.

How Does It Work?

After you update your iOS, your iPhone will detect driving movement and will ask if you want to enable Do Not Disturb While Driving mode. Once enabled, your phone will mute all texts and calls, and you have the option to send an auto reply that you are driving to specific contacts. This is intended to avoid the distraction of your phone ringing and the temptation to check your phone—no matter how briefly—while you are behind the wheel.

The mode can be turned on in two different ways:

  • Manually when you are about to drive
  • Automatically when your iPhone detects the motion of a car

One possible flaw in the system is that your iPhone can only tell if you are in the car and will not differentiate between drivers and passengers. For this reason, many passengers will disable the function and may forget to manually enable it next time they drive.

In addition, if your iPhone detects you are driving but your iPhone connects to the Bluetooth system in your car, your phone will assume you have a safe way of communicating and will allow you to continue to use your hands-free system. This can be a problem, however, because hands-free systems are still highly distracting to drivers.

All in all, Apple seems to have good intentions by installing the Do Not Disturb While Driving mode. However, just as laws against texting and driving in most states have not stopped drivers from engaging in this dangerous behavior, you cannot count on the fact that a new iPhone feature will stop distracted drivers.

About 391,000 people were injured by distracted drivers in one year in the United States. You never know when a distracted driver will crash into you and cause you serious injury. While steps may be taken to deter distracted driving, there is always the chance you can get injured on the road.

Our South Carolina Car Accident Attorney Can Help You

Columbia, South Carolina, attorney Lori Murray believes that dangerous drivers should be held accountable for the injuries and losses they cause. Lori represents clients injured in many types of accidents, including those caused by distracted drivers. Please call our auto accident lawyer at the Law Offices of Lori S. Murray at (803) 779-4472 or use our online contact form to set up a free consultation today.

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