Finally, two apps are pairing up for the common good. Spotify controls will now be integrated into Waze’s driving directions. The idea is to remove as many driver distractions as possible. Battling rush hour traffic needs your full attention. Skipping through your playlist is a recipe for disaster.

The new integration is being rolled out this week. Once you have both apps installed, a Spotify icon will appear within Waze. Tap it, and it opens up limited playback controls, playlists and the Spotify app. You can be inside the Spotify app and see turn by turn directions. Luckily, living in Gadsden, AL, traffic is avoiding the Walmart in town, and that’s about it.

Waze Adds Safety Feature

Letting you control Spotify isn’t enough for Waze in combating distracted driving. The Google-owned company is not allowing you to switch playlists once the vehicle is moving. Pick a destination, and the playlist you have selected starts up once Waze navigation starts. Users will have to stop the car to switch playlists.

Spotify and waze

Granted, you can always switch over to the actual Spotify app, but it’s a step in the right direction.

How can it be improved?

While a sizable leap in the right direction, the idea can be furthered. All navigation apps should allow the pairing of our favorite music streaming services. That means Apple Music and more with Apple Maps, etc.

Next would be complete voice control. Waze is smart by limiting the user’s ability to swap playlists, but people can always app switch while driving. Having voice control integrated tightly with the music and navigation would keep everyone’s eyes on the road and not fumbling through our smartphones.

Digital assistants would actually have a use outside of making phone calls. It could remove one level of distracted driving. Now, can we get a system for texting? Too many lives are cut short or upended by texting and driving. Tickets aren’t enough.

Smartphone makers and the operating systems powering them need to step up to the plate and find the right solution to cutting a phone’s ability to text for the driver.

Distracted driving is a solvable problem. Waze and Spotify took a sizable step today. Now it’s a question of who follows in the footsteps of the apps?

Gear. TV. Movies. Lifestyle. Photography. Yeah, I’m the type who sees a shiny object and is immediately captivated. Wait... There’s another. You can reach me at marcus@newsledge.com

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