Android Auto, Apple CarPlay more distracting while driving than texting, alcohol: study

Even when using voice commands, these systems were found to be more distracting than driving under the influence

A new study from U.K.-based independent road safety charity IAM Road Smart has found that Android Auto and Apple CarPlay provide more distractions to drivers than texting, alcohol or marijuana.

As part of the study, IAM Road Smart looked at 46 different drivers and found that use of Android Auto and Apple CarPlay while behind the wheel could delay reaction times by up to 57 percent. This could result in an increase in stopping distances by up to four car lengths.

By comparison, those driving with the legal limit of alcohol had distractions go up by 12 percent, those who had smoked pot were 21 percent more distracted and those who were texting were 35 percent more distracted.

Touch commands for Android Auto and CarPlay were, unsurprisingly, the biggest culprit, with drivers being distracted by anything from punching in GPS data to finding a song on Spotify. Voice commands for these systems were found to be less distracting that touch but were still more distracting than drinking under the influence of either pot or alcohol.

To conclude its report, IAM RoadSmart suggested that drivers “set everything up [in Android Auto and CarPlay] before a journey” while calling for authorities to further review these in-car systems.

Source: IAM RoadSmart