Apple
Now playing
01:42
See the $699 iPhone 11's new features
Now playing
02:55
Surgeon general issues warning about sharing health information on social media
CNN
Now playing
04:18
Cooper: Ignoring Trump, as tempting as it may be, isn't option
A person uses Windows software
Shutterstock
A person uses Windows software
Now playing
00:53
Microsoft urges Windows users to install update
Staff enter the headquarters of information technology firm Kaseya in Miami, Florida, U.S., in an undated still image from video. Kaseya/Handout via REUTERS NO RESALES. NO ARCHIVES. THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY.
Kaseya via Reuters
Staff enter the headquarters of information technology firm Kaseya in Miami, Florida, U.S., in an undated still image from video. Kaseya/Handout via REUTERS NO RESALES. NO ARCHIVES. THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY.
Now playing
01:41
Kaseya: The massive ransomware attack compromised up to 1,500 businesses
Getty Images
Now playing
02:43
Websites and apps go down during massive outage
Messaging in iOS 15.
Apple
Messaging in iOS 15.
Now playing
01:34
FaceTime. IDs. Do Not Disturb. See Apple's latest updates
Clockwork
Now playing
02:20
Robot manicure really 'nails it'
Avengers Campus at Disney California Adventure Park in Anaheim, California, invites guests of all ages into a new land where they can sling webs on the first Disney ride-through attraction to feature Spider-Man. The immersive land also presents multiple heroic encounters with Avengers and their allies, like Iron Man, Black Panther, Black Widow and more. At Pym Test Kitchen, food scientists will utilize Ant-Man and The WaspÕs shrinking and growing technology to serve up perfectly sized snacks. (Christian Thompson/Disneyland Resort)
DISNEY
Avengers Campus at Disney California Adventure Park in Anaheim, California, invites guests of all ages into a new land where they can sling webs on the first Disney ride-through attraction to feature Spider-Man. The immersive land also presents multiple heroic encounters with Avengers and their allies, like Iron Man, Black Panther, Black Widow and more. At Pym Test Kitchen, food scientists will utilize Ant-Man and The WaspÕs shrinking and growing technology to serve up perfectly sized snacks. (Christian Thompson/Disneyland Resort)
Now playing
01:46
Disney unveils one of its most innovative attractions
Now playing
05:37
Novogratz: Sports will make NFTs broadly accessible
Courtesy AirlingRatings.com
Now playing
02:45
Delta Air Lines prepares 'connected cabins' for post-pandemic flights
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, center, gives his opening remarks flanked by local state delegation members prior to signing legislation that seeks to punish social media platforms that remove conservative ideas from their sites, inside Florida International University's MARC building in Miami on Monday, May 24, 2021. (Carl Juste/Miami Herald via AP)
Carl Juste/Miami Herald/AP
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, center, gives his opening remarks flanked by local state delegation members prior to signing legislation that seeks to punish social media platforms that remove conservative ideas from their sites, inside Florida International University's MARC building in Miami on Monday, May 24, 2021. (Carl Juste/Miami Herald via AP)
Now playing
01:07
Florida governor signs bill targeting social media platforms
Now playing
03:03
This company is making drone delivery a reality
Now playing
05:21
Inside the logistics system behind Alibaba
YouTube/Joel Johnson
Now playing
01:46
Watch self-driving car struggle to understand traffic cones
Boston-based REGENT's "seaglider" is a mix between a boat and an aircraft with a top speed of 180 mph.
REGENT
Boston-based REGENT's "seaglider" is a mix between a boat and an aircraft with a top speed of 180 mph.
Now playing
01:00
It's a boat? It's a plane? No, it's a 'seaglider.' And it goes fast...really fast
Washington, DC CNN Business —  

A Google and Amazon-backed startup believes its Jeopardy trivia app is safe for drivers to play while behind the wheel, but experts on distracted driving aren’t convinced.

Drivetime, which was founded last year and based in San Francisco, wants to make driving entertaining through safe games. It’s designed hands-free games so drivers can answer questions while keeping their eyes on the road and hands on the wheel. Drivetime offers a free daily game for users, and charges a fee for additional games, including Jeopardy.

Drivetime announced the new Jeopardy game last week, as well as that it’s raised $11 million from investors, including Amazon’s Alexa Fund and the Google Assistant Investments Program. Both companies have an interest in supporting apps that use voice technology.

Drivetime has been downloaded about 200,000 times, according to AppAnnie, a mobile insights and analytics platform. To play Drivetime’s games, users must first open the app, look at the screen and select a game to play. During gameplay, it is entirely hands-free.

US pedestrian fatalities have increased 40% since 2008, the year after the iPhone was unveiled and smartphone sales began skyrocketing. Researchers believe smartphones may have contributed to an unprecedented spike.

Drivetime believes its app helps keep drivers alert and diverts them from engaging in dangerous tasks on their smartphone, such as texting. It points to four studies into drowsy driving that show how “alertness maintaining tasks,” such as games and talking can improve driver alertness. The idea is that stimulating the brain keeps people awake, engaged and ready to drive.

But experts aren’t sold on Drivetime, including researchers behind two of the studies Drivetime cites.

“It is quite obvious that such a game will distract drivers when traffic is dense, even when hands-free,” said Willem B. Verwey, a professor at the University of Twente in the Netherlands, whose 1999 study on fighting drowsiness in nighttime driving has been cited by Drivetime.

Paul Atchley, a University of South Florida professor who led a study on driver alertness that Drivetime cites, cautioned against any conclusions on Drivetime being drawn before testing it. Atchley’s study focused on monotonous, flat rural highways with minimal traffic, not congested urban commutes.

“If Drivetime was designed well, it could be fine,” Atchley said. “You have to find the engagement sweet spot that keeps someone’s brain going without being so engaging that it takes resources away from paying attention to the road.”

Drivetime CEO Niko Vuori told CNN Business that Drivetime hadn’t been independently tested, but that he welcomes such research.

“We know we are on the right side of the safety argument,” Vuori said.

Last week Google investor Ilya Gelfenbeyn described Drivetime as a pioneer in safe, stimulating entertainment for drivers. Google and Amazon both declined to comment on the concerns experts have raised.

David Strayer, a University of Utah professor who researches distracted driving, said the distraction of Drivetime likely falls between listening to a book on tape, and talking on a hands-free cell phone. When comparing Drivetime with texting while driving, he called the app the lesser of two evils.

“We can’t all be goody two-shoes and sit in the car and do nothing, so maybe if it crowds out less safe behavior like texting that’s good,” Strayer said.

Other safety experts were less positive.

“We can’t see a safety benefit to having people play Jeopardy on the road through an app,” said Maureen Vogel, a spokeswoman for the National Safety Council, an organization devoted to ending preventable deaths. “We shouldn’t be encouraging drivers to do anything behind the wheel that could impede their ability to drive.”