Articles, Car-Electronics, Connectivity & Telematics

AAA Study: Which Infotainment Systems distract Drivers the most?

According to an AAA (American Auto Association) study, some infotainment systems are more distracting than others. Which are the perpetrators?
In 2017 a study on the topic of distraction by infotainment systems was published the University of Utah. At that time, researchers noticed that infotainment systems bear a high risk of distraction. The tests included 30 vehicles that have been sold on the market during the year. The frightening results showed that the time spent for operating infotainment systems (and being distracted) was high enough to increase the risk of an accident significantly.

AAA study on Infotainment Systems

The AAA study goes in the same direction, discovering a long and demanding absence among drivers who were struggling with the infotainment system. The focus of the investigation was on 5 models that have emerged in the last two years. During the experiment, test persons were asked to change the music, make settings and conduct calls in the simulator. The models examined were the Honda Ridgeline RTL-E 2017, the Ford Mustang GT 2017, the General Motors Chevrolet Silverado LK, the Kia Optima 2018 and the Dodge Ram 1500 Laramie built in 2018.

Google Android Auto und Apple CarPlay

Some of the models mentioned featured the operating systems Android and CarPlay. Android is part of Google and CarPlay was developed by its fierce competitor Apple. Compared to the manufacturers’ systems, these two systems performed significantly better. Both systems needed less effort and time than the manufacturers’ systems. Android scored at program navigation while Apple CarPlay dominated the category text messaging.

Infotainment systems and their level of distraction

It’s quickly explained, why these two system perform so much better than their competition. Their controls are already well known from the respective smartphones and they offer a much better usability. Depending on the task, it took the testers up to 15 seconds less to complete an operation on average. The AAA plans to add event more manufacturer models to the study, but you can already guess that they won’t top Apple and Google.
Read the full AAA study here.

About the author:

David Fluhr is journalist and owner of the digital magazine “Autonomes Fahren & Co”. He is reporting regularly about trends and technologies in the fields Autonomous Driving, HMI, Telematics and Robotics. Link to his site: