More specifically, are there any distinctions between using a smartphone, dedicated GPS device, or a built-in system (similar to the car radio), while driving (i.e. car in motion on a public road), and does it matter if it's via typing text into it or some sort of voice search.

I have seen stuff like this consumer reports saying that it's illegal to hold a device (i.e. smartphone), but I am not sure how much if it is legally acceptable, and if it matters if it's in a "holder" or not. On the other side, I don't see GPS mentioned anywhere here at handsfreeinfo - again, not the best legal source.

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    It really depends more on local ordinances. Here is Alabama, we have some cities that will hunt you down religiously if they see you doing anything without both hands on the wheel, and then there are others that, as long as you stay reasonably (like no more than 15mph above) near the speed limit, then they leave you alone. – Daniel Nov 16 '15 at 14:28
  • @Daniel was looking for Michigan, thus the tag - slightly related, does it matter which cop pulls you over, i.e. if it's a state trooper or a local city police which laws they can use? – user2813274 Nov 16 '15 at 16:16
  • Well, it really depends on what city you're in is what it boils down to. Here in AL, most cities with anti-phone ordinances have them posted. – Daniel Nov 16 '15 at 16:32

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