Despite Google Glass users being able to keep their eyes on the road and having the ability to send text messages using voice transcription technology and head commands, a new study conducted at the University of Florida suggests that texting via Google Glass while driving is no safer than traditional texting and driving.
“When you look at how fast people react to an unexpected traffic event – how fast they slam on their brakes, we didn’t find a statistically significant difference between Google Glass and smartphones,” said psychological researcher Ben Sawyer at the University of Central Florida when speaking to Reuters.
Forty people took part in the study, where each participant texted about a math problem while driving using a simulator. Some participants texted with Google Glass while driving the simulator, while others used a smartphone. The simulation had a car suddenly stop in front of the drivers, forcing them to react in order to avoid a collision.
The study found that there was almost no difference in response time between the two groups. Google Glass proponents say the eyewear is safe to use while driving because the driver’s eyes never need to leave the road, but Sawyer made a good point when he said, “Looking does not necessarily mean you are seeing.”
Although this study only accounts for a very small sample of drivers, we can’t help but wonder if the same results would apply to the new technologically-advanced heads-up displays and in-car voice commands. Here at Bell Mitsubishi, we want to know what you think! Let us know if you think Google Glass behind the wheel is a safer alternative to traditional texting.