ATLANTA – Apple’s new “Do Not Disturb While Driving” feature is another valuable tool to prevent distractions behind the wheel, but the temptations do linger.
The feature is an update to the Do Not Disturb mode that already exists on iphones, and can be activated in phone’s settings.
Commuter Dude put the feature to the test at the Atlanta Motorsports Park in Dawsonville, where orange cones are the only potential victims of distracted driving.
“That's a big advancement to reduce the temptation to want to look at your phone,” says professional driving instructor Andrew Pinkerton.
With the Do Not Disturb While Driving feature activated and the phone on lock, Commuter Dude Jerry Carnes slowly rolls onto the course. From the backseat, 11Alive Traffic Tracker Crash Clark tries to text Carnes, but Commuter Dude’s phone does not alert him to the texts. Instead, the screen of his phone stays dark.
“We're only going 10 miles an hour,” says Pinkerton.
Clark receives a message telling him that Commuter Dude will receive his texts when he stops driving. Clark is also alerted that he can text“urgent” to send an urgent message. When he does, his texts go through to Commuter Dude’s phone.
Try to unlock your phone in Do Not Disturb mode, and your screen will allow you override the feature by claiming that you're not driving. It’s supposed to allow passengers to text while in a moving vehicle, but it doesn’t prevent drivers from behind dishonest.
“You have to exercise that personal control to not press that,” says Pinkerton.
The settings will block phone calls unless a driver has Bluetooth or another hands-free system. You can allow calls from your contacts or favorites list.