Did you know there are consumer breathalyzers that you can plug into your phone? Probably not. But as they say, there’s an app for that. Quite a few, actually – a cursory Google search found brands such as BACtrack, Breathometer and Alcohoot all offering competitively-priced smartphone breathalyzers and accompanying software. They range in price and could potentially provide an important service for frequent partygoers and the selfie-obsessed. That is, if they were accurate.
Which Smartphone Breathalyzer Is the Best?
New York Times reporter Jennifer Jolly, alongside the California Highway Patrol, recently investigated this new trend of smartphone breathalyzers and what she found was that, often, the results provided by the breathalyzers were of dubious accuracy. The test involved Jolly drinking incrementally over time and blowing into the smartphone breathalyzers to measure her BAC, comparing the measurements to a baseline provided by a bona fide breathalyzer provided by police.
Of the four iBreathalyzers tested, only one provided results that mirrored the real deal.
What does this mean for owners of a smartphone breathalyzer? In short, you probably should not trust your smartphone to tell you whether or not it is safe to drive under the influence of alcohol. Siri is great, but even she can’t give you an exact measurement of your impairment, so err on the side of caution and hitch an Uber instead.
Our Denver DUI attorneys strive to provide the best possible client experience for Coloradoans accused of driving under the influence.