As much as we all want our business companies to be successful, we also need to be smart about our personal habits. We’ve seen the statistics regarding the dangers of distracted driving, and now the move to educate motorists about it has reached the big technology companies, namely Microsoft.
Microsoft is looking to start by reducing distractions among teenage drivers. The company has filed for a patent named “Mobile Device for Safe Driving”. According to wwinbeta.org, it operates on Windows Mobile handsets and would monitor the driver’s phone-using habits while behind the wheel and send alerts to their parents when necessary. Many of the phone’s functions would be disabled based on a driver’s experience level.
Statistics have said that up to a quarter of teenagers receive and send text messages while they are driving. Driving may be the hardest part about letting a teenager grow because you can’t always be with them. But you can educate them, and there are more than a few apps that can help them along the highway.
CellControl prevents phone behaviors that have been designated in advance and disables a driver’s phone if it is used too much. CellControl.com notes that a user has to create an account online, download the CellControl app, and attach Drive ID to the car windshield. Drive ID is solar-powered and disables the device while the vehicle is moving.
CellControl can even notify parents if the teenager attempts to disable it. CellControl works without interaction from the driver, and it can be configured to send alerts to parents for any driver violations. It costs $129.
Drive Safe.ly takes a different approach. It is a free mobile app that reads text messages and emails out loud in real time. The driver doesn’t need to touch their phone at all in the process. The app has simple “ON” and “OFF” buttons, and a “Settings” button that will allow you to change the behavior of Drive Safe.ly without draining the phone’s battery.
3.) Text Arrest
This is a free application for androids. Text Arrest allows parents to disable a teenager’s phone whenever they are in a moving vehicle. The phone can be shut off if the vehicle exceeds the speed limit or travels outside of certain limits. In the case of an emergency, the phone can be used upon notification by parents.
Live2Txt lets a teen selectively block incoming text messages and phone calls. The app can also send a message to the person sending the message that the party they are trying to reach is unavailable and currently driving. The driver can notify someone that they are moving by simply turning the app on and off.
This app came about as a result of five New Oxford High School students being killed in a distracted driving accident in 2011. New Oxford student Michael Ryan Jr. created a distracted driving app that became available on Google Play in June 2016.
It is described there as a tool that blocks a phone’s user from sending text messages, as well as receiving them from another party. The app can block incoming calls, and also add three numbers who can contact the user at any time. You can also disable any app on the phone by hitting the ”Home” button.
Distraction.gov notes that the percentage of drivers who were text messaging or using devices while driving increased by .5 percent from 2013 to 2014. That rate has been higher for drivers aged 16 to 24 since 2007. And ten percent of drivers aged 15 to 19 who were involved in fatal crashes were reportedly distracted at the time.
Hopefully employing even one of these apps can make a big difference in saving lives on our roadways.