How to Use Do Not Disturb While Driving

MacRumors

macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
46,334
8,747



Starting with iOS 11, Apple introduced a Do Not Disturb While Driving Feature that's designed to mute incoming calls, texts, and notifications while you're driving to cut down on accident-causing distractions.

Do Not Disturb While Driving is not a feature that's enabled automatically, but you will see a popup prompting you to turn it on when Apple detects the motion of a car after installing iOS 11 or later for the first time. Despite the notification, you'll still need to choose how you want to use the feature if you miss the initial setup process.


Do Not Disturb can be set to turn on manually, automatically when the iPhone detects a car's acceleration, or when an iPhone connects to a car's Bluetooth.

Enabling Do Not Disturb While Driving

  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Tap Do Not Disturb.
  3. Scroll down to "Do Not Disturb While Driving."
  4. Tap on "Activate" to choose how you want Do Not Disturb While Driving to be turned on. If you don't want to use Do Not Disturb While Driving, set it to manual.
Whenever Do Not Disturb While Driving is activated, you'll see a bar at the top of the screen letting you know incoming notifications are being muted.

Do Not Disturb While Driving Control Center Toggle

If you don't want to have Do Not Disturb While Driving turn on automatically but still want to use it, there's a Control Center setting for activating it.
  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Choose Control Center.
  3. Select Customize Controls.
  4. Add Do Not Disturb While Driving, which has an image of a car.
This adds the Do Not Disturb While Driving toggle to your Control Center. To turn it on or off, you just need to swipe to open the Control Center and tap it.

If You're a Passenger

When the automatic setting is enabled, Do Not Disturb While Driving will turn on whenever your iPhone detects the acceleration of a vehicle. This can be inconvenient if you're a passenger, so you'll need to turn it off through the Control Center or by tapping the persistent Do Not Disturb While Driving popup at the top of the display to let Apple know you're a passenger.


Choosing Your Auto Reply Options

When you're driving, all of your incoming text messages are muted. You can choose an automatic text message that lets people know you're in the car and will text later, and you can customize who sees the message.

  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Choose Do Not Disturb.
  3. Scroll down to "Auto-Reply To" and tap it.
  4. You can choose for automatic texts to be sent to Recents, Favorites, All Contacts, or No one, if you would rather not have your phone send automatic replies.
Customizing Your Auto Reply

  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Choose Do Not Disturb.
  3. Scroll down to "Auto-Reply" and tap it.
Apple sets a default message in this section, but you can change it to say whatever you want. This is the message people will receive when texting you when Do Not Disturb While Driving is enabled.

If there's an urgent issue and someone needs to get in contact with you immediately, they can break through Do Not Disturb While Driving by texting you "urgent." This will override your Do Not Disturb settings and will notify you of the text immediately.


An ideal setup is to set auto replies to your favorites, which likely translates to close friends and family. This will let them text you in an emergency situation, but will prevent other less urgent messages from being a distraction.

Phone Calls

If your iPhone is connected to your car's Bluetooth system, iOS is smart enough to know you have a hands-free calling method available. In this situation, calls will continue to come through even when Do Not Disturb While Driving is enabled. Texts and notifications from apps will continue to be muted, though.

If you're not connected to Bluetooth and have no hands-free accessory, calls will be blocked like text messages and notifications.

Parental Restrictions

For parents of teenagers, there's an option to enable a restriction that will prevent Do Not Disturb While Driving settings from being changed or toggled off, guaranteeing children are using the feature whenever they're in the car. Here's how to turn it on (iOS 12 or later):
  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Choose Screen Time.
  3. Tap on Content & Privacy Restrictions.
  4. Tap on the Content & Privacy Restrictions toggle to turn on restrictions.
  5. Scroll down to Do Not Disturb While Driving and tap it.
  6. Choose Don't Allow.
On devices running an earlier version of iOS, there are different steps to follow to access device restrictions. Open the Settings app, choose General, scroll down to Restrictions and then tap it. Enter your passcode and then find the "Do Not Disturb While Driving" option and choose "Don't Allow Changes."

Article Link: How to Use Do Not Disturb While Driving
 

Relentless Power

macrumors Nehalem
Jul 12, 2016
30,846
31,148
Even though this an optional feature to enable, easily one of the features in iOS 11 Addressing concerns about the users distractions on the Roadway and for others safety.
 

soupcan

macrumors 6502a
Nov 21, 2014
725
2,926
Netherlands
I have a way shorter version.

Step 1: put phone on silent.
Step 2: put phone in pocket and keep it there.
Step 2: ???
Step 3: profit.

And if you're the kind of person who can't keep his hands off of his phone and thinks it's more important than paying attention to the road then you shouldn't even have a drivers licence.
 

spazzcat

macrumors 68030
Jun 29, 2007
2,627
1,404
I have a way shorter version.

Step 1: put phone on silent.
Step 2: put phone in pocket and keep it there.
Step 2: ???
Step 3: profit.

And if you're the kind of person who can't keep his hands off of his phone and thinks it's more important than paying attention to the road then you shouldn't even have a drivers licence.
DND replied to people so they know your driving.
 
  • Like
Reactions: tphalp

TheCannonator

macrumors newbie
Jul 12, 2017
26
16
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
I have a way shorter version.

Step 1: put phone on silent.
Step 2: put phone in pocket and keep it there.
Step 2: ???
Step 3: profit.

And if you're the kind of person who can't keep his hands off of his phone and thinks it's more important than paying attention to the road then you shouldn't even have a drivers licence.
Excuse me Mr. Perfect it lets people know you are driving so they don’t bother you.
 

Brien

macrumors 68030
Aug 11, 2008
2,945
603
Do Not Disturb While Driving is not a feature that's enabled automatically, but you will see a popup prompting you to turn it on when Apple detects the motion of a car after installing iOS 11 for the first time.
Is anyone else getting this every time they are in the car instead of just once? I've already chosen a setting.
 
  • Like
Reactions: psac

dsherh5

macrumors newbie
Sep 26, 2014
29
7
Does anyone know if this feature automatically works with WatchOS 4 on an Apple Watch so that when your phone has this enabled the watch also respects the rule conditions? So far it works perfectly on my iPhone but my watch still gets texts and calls and all other notifications
 

powaking

macrumors 6502
Jul 3, 2008
430
126
Is this only useful for just texts coming in via SMS/iMessage or will other texting apps (Telegram, Slack, Skype, Snapchat etc.) also receive the DND reply message?
 

klymr

macrumors 65816
May 16, 2007
1,447
98
Utah
Does anyone know if this feature automatically works with WatchOS 4 on an Apple Watch so that when your phone has this enabled the watch also respects the rule conditions? So far it works perfectly on my iPhone but my watch still gets texts and calls and all other notifications
On wOS 3.2.3 it puts my Watch into DND mode so nothing comes through. I haven't been brave enough to update to wOS 4 yet, so I can't comment on that. Something about a past update pushed out by Apple bricking my Watch left a bad taste in my mouth for early adoption.
 

Dem34

macrumors newbie
Sep 21, 2017
1
1
The issue i'm getting with DnD with driving is that since it mutes all notifications, i cant use my iPhone as a music player when its connected to Bluetooth.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Donpauli2

MvdM

macrumors 6502
Apr 27, 2005
262
298
So it will disturb you and ask for your attention while driving or when waiting for the traffic lights the first time you have your phone in the car
 

apolloa

Suspended
Oct 21, 2008
12,318
7,759
Time, because it rules EVERYTHING!
One of the best features and I didn’t have to do a thing really to use it, it just asked me are you driving and do you want to use do not disturb, I clicked yes, done!!
And since then it’s turned on and off automatically as expected.

Great feature.
 

Peel

macrumors 6502a
Aug 30, 2004
572
84
Seattle
Do Not Disturb while Driving sounds good, but it's a bit infuriating. If I could decide which features to turn on it would be great, but as it is, it's all or nothing. I'm tired of getting in the car and saying "Hey Siri, open Waze", only to get a reply, "I'm sorry, I can't do that while you're driving." Well, if I can't open a navigation app while driving, that's pretty useless. I mean, when else would I want to open that app?
 
  • Like
Reactions: rcczar1 and mwearl

dsherh5

macrumors newbie
Sep 26, 2014
29
7
Do Not Disturb while Driving sounds good, but it's a bit infuriating. If I could decide which features to turn on it would be great, but as it is, it's all or nothing. I'm tired of getting in the car and saying "Hey Siri, open Waze", only to get a reply, "I'm sorry, I can't do that while you're driving." Well, if I can't open a navigation app while driving, that's pretty useless. I mean, when else would I want to open that app?
I hear you but I think the way it works kind of makes sense. If I start my gps app before I start driving I noticed that it works just fine. I know that might not work for you always but I think the thinking Apple had is that most (and I mean most not all) people are likely to start a gps direction BEFORE they start driving. It won’t apply in every case (yours for example), but I think it most situations as it relates to things such as gps it kind of works pretty okay and makes sense the way it works. Most people should not be fidgeting with the gps and and trying to input directions WHILE they are driving imho.
[doublepost=1506015596][/doublepost]
On wOS 3.2.3 it puts my Watch into DND mode so nothing comes through. I haven't been brave enough to update to wOS 4 yet, so I can't comment on that. Something about a past update pushed out by Apple bricking my Watch left a bad taste in my mouth for early adoption.
Thank you for reminding me of this. I just tested this and this works the same way in watchOS 4. I just had my DND settings to NOT mirror my iPhone setting. Changing it to mirror iPhone fixed my issues. Thanks for the reminder
 

cerote

macrumors 6502a
Mar 2, 2009
832
266
I have a way shorter version.

Step 1: put phone on silent.
Step 2: put phone in pocket and keep it there.
Step 2: ???
Step 3: profit.

And if you're the kind of person who can't keep his hands off of his phone and thinks it's more important than paying attention to the road then you shouldn't even have a drivers licence.
Yea that's the issue is people can't keep their hands off for some reason. Even when they look up and have to swerve to correct themselves and then they look right back down again at it.

Self driving cars is the better hope for us to not die from these people. But of course there will be something with that people will find to cause issues and still take people out with cars.