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Onlineschools.com recently released an infographic on how texting and driving occurs and why it is so dangerous for teen as well as adult drivers. The numbers are staggering. In 2011 alone, 23% of all auto collisions involved cellphones, while 77% of young adults are confident they can text and drive safely. News flash: It’s not safe to text and drive!
So what’s the safest way to deal with text messages when you’re driving? Download one of these apps before you get in the driver seat! I’ve compiled a list of apps that will help defend adults, teens and other drivers against the dangers of texting and driving.
DriveMode - Blackberry, Android (Free) – In 2010 AT&T announced a campaign against phone usage while driving called “It Can Wait”. It Can Wait is a program to stop teens and adults from using their cellphones while driving. To really get their point across, AT&T released a mobile app called DriveMode that would put a users smartphone in a mode where it is unable to notify a user if they have received a message or phone call. If a user receives a text while DriveMode is enabled, DriveMode will send an auto response saying “I am driving and am unable to respond to your text at the moment.” The app does allow users to set up 5 numbers to bypass the system, as well as give the user the ability to call emergency numbers. It also still allows access to navigation applications and music. Personally, I think that allowing 5 phone numbers to bypass the system is defeating the purpose of the app, but allowing them is also necessary if some sort of emergency occurred that a user would need to know about. But in all, DriveMode is a great step in the right direction to fight against texting and driving.
DriveSafe.ly – iPhone, Android, Blackberry, WP7 (Free) – Too many times I see drivers slowly swerving into other lanes, only to pass them and see that they are holding their phone in between their face and the windshield. Well DriveSafe.ly completely stops this driving no-no and replaces it with totally hands free communication. DriveSafe.ly is an app that reads all incoming texts and emails out loud, reducing driver distraction while keeping the drivers focus on more important things, like the road! Some cool features to this app are that it can connect to your car stereo via bluetooth allowing your texts to be read through your stereo speakers. Also it can read shorthand text like LOL and BRB ( instead of being pronounced like lull or burb) The developers of DriveSafe.ly have put some time into this app making it easily accessible, with a one touch on and off switch and many customization options. Most importantly it will keep you and other drivers safer on the roadways.
DriveSmart Plus – Android ($4.99/Month) – This app may cost a pretty penny but it is definitely worth it. It is arguably the best app to stop texting and driving on the market because of its features. DriveSmart Plus uses a smartphone users GPS to automatically detect when a user is driving and puts the phone into Driving Mode. When in driving mode, phone calls will be automatically sent to voicemail and text messages will be held until the car stops and the phone automatically switches itself out of driving mode. Similiar to the other apps, the app has a large emergency phone call button in the bottom corner as well as an override button in the opposite corner. This is almost exactly the “unlock” experience that other applications have, with one exception: with DriveSmart Plus, a parent can choose to be notified whenever a child activates the Override while in Driving Mode. So you have two options here; miss a text message from your friends or face the consequences from mom. You don’t want to make mom mad.
The one thing these apps were meant to do is keep you safe on the roadways. But at the end of the day, the only thing that will really keep any driver safe is their own discretion. Be safe out there! Check out www.textkills.com to learn more info on the dangers of texting and driving.