NHTSA Instructs Mobile Device Manufacturers to add Driver Mode and Automatic Pairing Technology to Their Products

The plans suggested by the US National Highway Traffic Administration (NHTSA), is expected to push portable electronic device manufacturing companies to incorporate advanced technology developed to tackle distracted driving.

These new plans would encompass GPS/navigation systems, communications devices, smartphones, wearable technology, tablets and other aftermarket devices that are increasingly being installed in motor vehicles in form of display or navigation systems. The broader scope of these plans is targeting various industrial sectors, which were till now, not been an under the radar of regulatory compliances of NHTSA. This will be also observed the latest effort by the agency to combating the issues of motor vehicle safety and technology.

Tile as the “Phase 2 guidelines” and have similar connotations to that “Phase 1” that also addressed the issues of driving distraction associated with original vehicle equipment. However, the phase 2 guidelines have been outlined as “nonbinding,” and “voluntary” and most probably will exert considerable pressure on intended industries to develop high-end technology to comply with the guidelines. Stakeholders are expected to reflect on the new plans before the plans are finally enforced in Feb 2017. The phase 2 guidelines have been aimed at responding to the discomforts caused by mobiles devices that curtail driver performance and road mishaps. Moreover, NHTSA believes that the phase two guidelines will be an additional support to the broader idea of curbing distracted driving incidents, which includes revised laws for motor vehicles and industry-led activities. While the phase 2 guidelines are intended at portable device makers, they may also influence mobile app developers who may need to update their products in order to adhere to the new norms.

NHTSA plans for aftermarket devices are quite definitive similar to that of phase 1 guidelines. The phase 2 guidelines comprise of (a) The “2/12 Rule”, (b) Per Se Lock Outs and (c) Other Device Interface Provisions.

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