Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Touch screens and integrated phones are distractions in cars

Using in-car technology with gadgets such as touchscreens, integrated phones and satnavs can be extremely distracting when used on the move. A survey was done recently by ‘Which?’. They tested the in-car technology systems of eight of United Kingdom’s bestselling car makers and reported that they found many features difficult to handle while driving. Some car companies performed well as far as ease and facilities were concerned. Others needed to make sure that their systems posed as less a distraction as possible to drivers and motorists. It has been reported that the methods were not adhering to simplifying things for the drivers. People do want systems in their car like integrated audio, phones, satnavs and the like but it is time for the government to intervene and offer some guidance to car manufacturers on focusing and building less distracting systems. There are several points that can be considered along these lines: • Drivers should not look away from the road for more than a couple of seconds at a time to operate devices. • Only few inputs should be needed to operate devices. • It should be strongly recommended to develop better voice recognition systems. • Rather than be buried in on-screen menu systems, it is safer to use key functions through dedicated buttons for radio stations, air circulation and heating controls. • The entering functions for satnav destinations should be disabled when in motion. • The center console displays have to be placed high up so that the driver does not have to glance down at them. • Synching a mobile phone to a car through Bluetooth should be allowed only when stationary. Drivers should not be able to initiate phone calls while driving other than through voice control. Even accepting a call should be made simple. While moving, the car should read out SMS messages rather than display text on a screen. • All internet functions should only be accessible when the car is stationary.

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