Apple, Pioneer team up for safer driving experience

THE explosion of smart phone use in Australia has proven deadly behind the wheel.

More and more, we hear of people who have perished or been seriously injured while texting or checking out their Facebook updates while driving.

But phone makers like Apple are joining forces with companies like Pioneer to provide far safer solutions which allow people to stay in touch without taking their eyes off the road.

As well as great sound and DVD quality, these systems incorporate easy to use street by street navigation screens, an array of apps, internet radio, digital radio, media players, Pandora and Spotify support, as well as USB and HDMI inputs and outputs.

High end system like Pioneer's AVIC-F60DAB allow rear seat passengers to enjoy audio or video content via rear seat monitors and headphones while the driver listens to different audio or operates the navigation system.

Without touching your phone, you can ask Siri where the nearest petrol station is, the nearest McDonalds, or a good place to stop for the night.

You can also find out local points of interest or navigate your way to the nearest national park.

For business travellers, the idea of being able to dictate and hear text messages, while stuck in traffic, without touching your phone, is certainly a great alternative to a $350 fine.

Pioneer's sound systems go far beyond just that sort of functionality though.

You can adjust speaker levels, amps, and listening position levels all via the screen.

Time alignment allows you to change the setup of your speakers so the sound is tailored for the driver (or passenger if you're kind), giving you the feeling the sound is coming straight from the road ahead of you.

You can customize your display with wallpaper and colour themes to match your card, adjust your layouts, and even change the colour of buttons on your display.

While the prices are well beyond your average car stereo purchase, they are proving popular with buyers looking for an after-market car system worthy of a BMW or Mercedes.

And if they save your life, a $350 fine, or let you avoid traffic snarls, the outlay will be worth it.

Pioneer AVIC F60DOB unit
Pioneer AVIC F60DOB unit

Apps to make your trip

Australian Road Trips - Discover the best of Australia with these classic Aussie road trips, from fun-filled family holiday drives along the coast, breathtaking mountain drives through world heritage rainforests and remote outback 4WD adventures.

WikiCamps Australia - A dynamic user generated camping app for Australia.

There's Nothing Like Australia - Watch videos, read Holiday ideas and destination information to plan your holiday.

Australia Bushwalking - Step out on more than 90 bushwalks from short to epic and desert to sea with this inspirational and evocative App.

Postale - take pictures and create virtual postcards from all of your road trip destinations


Stay entertained on the way

Car Travel Games - Take the boredom out of one car journeys with three Car Travel Games for up to two players including Car Counter, Car Bingo and Car Colours.

What's the Plate? - Think you're pretty good at figuring out people's personalised number plates? Now you can you guess the hundreds of real life plates in What's the Plate!

Song Quiz - Challenge your music skills with thousands of songs! Listen to song clips and then guess who is playing.

Family Feud - just like the TV show; hours of fun in the car

Scrabble for iPad - great pass-and-play game for the car