iPhone driver safety feature released

The new feature will stop messages from being displayed to users.
The new feature will stop messages from being displayed to users. Photo credit: iStock

Apple's iOS 11 update began trials this week, giving testers a look at a new feature designed to combat distracted drivers.

The 'Do Not Disturb While Driving' feature will mute iPhones and stop notifications from lighting up the screen whenever the user is driving. It will automatically activate whenever the phone connects to a car's Bluetooth, or if it detects the motion of a moving vehicle.

The feature, which can be disabled, can be personalised to automatically reply to text messages and notify people when users are on the road.

Navigation or music playback won't be affected.

"It's all about keeping your eyes on the road," Apple vice president of software engineering Craig Federighi explained when announcing the feature in June.

"When you're driving, you don't need to respond to these kind of messages. In fact, you don't need to see them."

In New Zealand, it is illegal to use a mobile while driving to call, text, read messages or communicate in any way. Doing so could result in an $80 fine and 20 demerit point loss.

Apple's iOS 11 update is expected to roll out to everybody sometime this month.

Newshub.