The motoring authority of Victoria, VicRoads, has backed down on a plan to ban the use of mobile global positioning system (GPS) devices in cars.
The state’s revised mobile phone laws proposed to ban the use of smartphones as a GPS navigational aid while driving, which would have made Victoria the first state to introduce the restriction.
A spokesperson for VicRoads said the revised laws had been clarified to allow the use of mobile phones to make and receive calls, and as satellite navigational tools, if the device is secured in a commercially designed cradle.
“The change now states that in addition to being able to make or receive a call when the driver is using a phone in a cradle or remotely, the driver is also able to use the music and audio (without video) functions,” the spokesperson said in a statement.
“Using a phone as a GPS is also permitted, but only if the phone is secured in a commercially designed cradle.
“All other functions of the phone outside of GPS and music/audio (without video) remain prohibited.”
Earlier this year, GPS software manufacturer TomTom released an application that turns an iPhone into a turn-by-turn GPS navigation system. Telstra’s Whereis Navigator and Nokia’s Ovi mobile maps are also popular mobile GPS programs.