Saturday - Aug 19, 2017

4 Apps That Block Texting While Driving To keep Your Teen Safe


Distracted driving contributes to thousands of motor vehicle crashes that lead to about 431,000 injuries and over 3,000 deaths per year. Knowing this information, it’s easy to see why so many parents worry about their teenage drivers. Unfortunately, teenagers are more likely than adults to have distracted driving accidents because they use their phones so often and don’t have much experience behind the wheel.

If you’re worried that your teen isn’t driving safely, you can use these four apps to help him or her make better choices.

Auto SMS

Operating systems: Android and iOS

Price: Free, but you can remove ads for $2.38

While not specifically designed to prevent teens from texting and driving, Auto SMS offers features that will help your teenager make safer choices behind the wheel. When someone sends your teen a text message, the app will respond immediately with a pre-written text. If desired, the app will also respond to missed calls.

By setting up automatic responses, your teen doesn’t need to feel pressured to look at his or her phone or respond to texts while driving.

Live2Txt

Operating systems: Android and iOS

Price: $1.99

This app gives your teenage driver the ability to selectively block incoming phone calls and text messages. Live2Txt also lets your teen block messages from specific numbers. This comes in handy because it will prevent drivers from taking calls from their friends while leaving the line open for you. Just make sure you tell your teenager not to accept your messages until he or she reaches a safe place. Always emphasize that it’s unsafe to look at a smartphone even momentarily while behind the wheel.

Cellcontrol

Operating systems: Android and iOS

Price: App is free; required hardware device costs $129 for one car, additional car devices available

This app offers several features that can help your teenager drive safely. Like Auto SMS and Live2Txt, Cellcontrol blocks smartphone features that could cause distracted driving. Instead of blocking incoming messages, though, this app turns off a wider range of services so your teen can’t surf the internet, play games, or check social media accounts while driving.

Cellcontrol also improves your teenager’s driving performance by sending you feedback. If your teen follows safe driving practices, then you will get positive feedback that puts your mind at ease. If your teen speeds or takes other risks, then the app will give you an alert so you know that you should have a talk with him or her.

You can also use Cellcontrol to see your teenager’s routes and destinations. A map will show you everywhere your teenager goes, so you will know that he or she isn’t going to unsafe places or driving too far from home.

Since Cellcontrol uses advanced features, you should make sure that both you and your teenager have reliable smartphones with the latest operating system. The Samsung Galaxy S7 makes a good option for teen drivers because it has an affordable price and useful features like a fast Snapdragon 820 processor and a 5.1-inch Quad HD Super AMOLED display. Using the T-Mobile network will also give your teen’s phone a trustworthy connection that won’t be lost while he or she is driving.

DriveSafe Mode

Operating systems: Android and iOS

Price: Free

DriveSafe Mode uses a suite of features to keep your teenager safe. Most importantly, the app notifies you of your teen’s phone use while driving. DriveSafe Mode is sophisticated enough that it turns itself on. When your teen’s smartphone starts moving at a sufficiently high speed, the app automatically notifies you of any app use. You can include a short list of emergency phone numbers that your teen can call even when moving quickly. You don’t want to make it impossible for your teen to reach you. This feature encourages safety without blocking contact.

DriveSafe Mode will also send you an alert when the app is shut off while driving. Considering that teens don’t go anywhere without their phones, you will have constant feedback that lets you know your child is driving responsibly.

No one can ensure your teen’s safety on the road. These apps can, however, minimize distractions to help your teen drive safely.