How to activate auto-reply for messages while you’re driving (iPhone)

Prioritize safety by using auto-reply messages without the need for manual interaction.

One of the most critical aspects of ensuring safety on the road, for both yourself and others, is to avoid any form of interaction with your iPhone, particularly when it comes to texting. However, there are situations where you may need to inform others that you’re currently unavailable due to driving. In such cases, Apple provides an auto-reply feature to help you with this task.

To set up this auto-reply function, you’ll first need to ensure that your iPhone activates the ‘While Driving’ mode in Focus automatically when you’re on the road. You can adjust this setting by navigating to Settings > Focus > Driving Focus > While Driving. Here, you’ll find the following options:

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  1. Activate: By default, this setting is configured to ‘Automatically.’ However, if you prefer, you can opt for ‘When Connected to Car Bluetooth‘ if you only want it to activate when your iPhone is connected to your car’s Bluetooth, or ‘Manually‘ if you wish to enable it yourself from the Control Centre before you start driving.
  2. Activate With CarPlay: If your vehicle is equipped with CarPlay, you can synchronize the ‘While Driving‘ mode with your CarPlay usage by enabling this setting.
Auto-reply messages in iPhone

With ‘While Driving‘ now set up to activate automatically, you can proceed to compose your auto-reply messages. In the ‘Auto-Reply‘ section found at Settings > Focus > Driving Focus, you can craft your custom message. A default message is provided: ‘I’m driving with Focus turned on. I’ll see your message when I get where I’m going.’ You can decide who will receive this message, choosing from options such as ‘No One’ (effectively turning off the feature), ‘Recents,’ ‘Favourites,’ or ‘All Contacts.’

In the case of an urgent situation, someone who attempts to contact you can send an additional message simply reading ‘urgent’ as a response to bypass your Focus state. It’s crucial, however, that this is only used in truly urgent situations.

So, ensure that ‘While Driving‘ is automatically engaged, and then specify the recipients of your auto-reply message, setting up a safer and more responsible way to handle your messages while on the road.”

Happy journey, Drive safe and responsibly.

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