If you are a "Pokemon Go" fanatic, you may be familiar with the phenomenon of catching 'em all and driving... which is actually super dangerous, since it makes you way less likely to notice what's going on around you. Now, in order to cut down on the number of players who pull up the app while on the road, Niantic has created one more hoop that people have to jump through to play Pokemon while driving. The newest "Pokemon Go" update has a speed limit feature, which detects your speed and warns you if you're going too fast. In order to keep playing, you have to confirm that you're just a passenger, not the driver.
It is possible to lie, of course, and tell the app that you are not manning the wheel even if you are. It's a game, not a cop. It can't tell the difference. But having to confirm you are not driving puts an extra barrier in the way of those players who do try to drive and search for Pokemon at the same time. So far, drivers playing "Pokemon Go" have been the cause of accidents all over the world, making the phenomenon a troubling trend.
In Melbourne, Australia, a 19-year-old man who police believe was playing "Pokemon Go" drove his car through a fence and onto school property at St. Francis Xavier College, where he smashed into a portable building. A Vermont man allegedly crashed his car playing "Pokemon Go" while driving. In Baltimore, a man allegedly plowed straight into a police car while hunting for pocket monsters. Awkward. Also, dangerous. Very dangerous.
The bottom line? Don't drive and play Pokemon. You shouldn't need an app to tell you that.
And, depending on where you live, you can be arrested even if you don't cause a collision. In the Philippines, it's a traffic offense. In West Virginia, you can be pulled over if you're on your bike. And, obviously, any traffic violations you commit because you're not paying attention to the road are things that can get you in a barrel of trouble.
The bottom line? Play smart and ride in the passenger seat.