Everyone wants to be safer on the roads to preserve lives and reduce insurance rates related to property damage. Talk to Text Apps have become increasingly popular on smart phones since Texting while driving is a huge problem of late. This has prompted everyone to take a look at talk to text applications such as Siri to encourage everyone to keep both hands on the steering wheel. Unfortunately, studies conducted by Texas A&M Transportation Institute have found that voice-to-text apps used to send and receive text messages do not necessarily increase driver safety. In fact, there were no difference between manual texters and voice texters as it relates to driver response time. Is it really safer to use voice-to-text apps? The verdict is still out.
Are Talk to Text Apps Safer?
Well, most of us think they are. Most people cannot text with only one hand. So, in most instances, texting requires some ingenuity to manage the wheel and actually physically type a message to someone. For most people, there is some comfort in knowing that both hands can remain on the wheel with talk to text apps. Though the studies do not indicate that talk-to-text is safer, it seems as though it should be because, at least, both hands can remain on the wheel if the phone is resting in a cradle, but obviously, empirical data doesn’t lie.
It may be the fact that drivers feel safer that compel them to buy these applications rather than engage in manual texting. Perhaps perception takes some of the pressure and anxiety away from actually driving while texting.
So far, no differences have been found when testing Siri for iPhone and Vlingo for Android. These findings were found after a closed course was driven two to three times for each application. Manual texting and voice texting were equally as distracting. Thinking of a message and dictating a message will take concentration from the driving task. Drivers spent far less time looking at the roadway with each form of texting, which poses problems when obstacles suddenly enter the roadway.
It is more difficult to avoid a road hazard or a pedestrian when your focus is on talking or typing. The reaction time is slower, and you are more likely to hit the object rather than avoid it. This is why it is safer to pull to the side of the road to type or talk-to-text. Texting is not the only form of cellular phone usage under fire. A California court also ruled that checking maps on the GPS is in violation of the distracted driving law in California.
Types of Talk to Text Apps
Siri is a voice-activated application that allows you to text, schedule meetings, and place phone calls with voice only. The application is easy to use and understands most voices with minimal training. To make the application safe, voice responses will also be provided to drivers. This further minimizes distractions that may occur.
Vlingo offers voice-to-text technology that will help you remain safer while driving on the road. Anyone who is on-the-go constantly will enjoy this application. Whether you are looking for directions to a restaurants or a plumber, you can feel safer with voice recognition.
Talk to Text Applications
Talk-to-text applications may make drivers feel safer, but studies do not support this finding. More studies will have to be conducted to make sure that the applications are worth the investment. This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t invest if it does help you. You should just be cognizant that the studies show no difference. Sometimes feeling safer can actually translate into less stress, which may affect drivers in different ways. Until more studies are conducted, it may be best to go with your own personal preference. If you feel safer and weave less, try these talk-to-text applications.