November 24, 2012 in Business

Car apps kick texting, driving to the curb

Deborah Netburn Los Angeles Times
 

Txting n drivng?

If you can’t keep yourself from reading and sending text messages while driving, a host of smartphone applications can help you break the dangerous habit.

One of these apps is DriveMode, a free download from AT&T, which limits the phone’s functionality while you’re driving.

When DriveMode is activated it will automatically silence the notification sounds of incoming texts, emails and even your phone calls.

You still can receive and make calls for a list of up to five people if you absolutely need to hear from them. But no texts are allowed.

The app is available only for AT&T subscribers and only for Android and BlackBerry smartphones.

If you have an earlier iPhone or a BlackBerry, you can download the Drive Safe app, which provides a similar service.

If you are the parent of a teenage driver, consider downloading the DriveScribe app, available in Google Play and Apple’s App Store, to your child’s smartphone.

The free app uses a jamming function to block all texts and calls when it is switched to “driver mode.” It also keeps drivers apprised of speed limits and upcoming stop signs, and will even tell a driver to slow down if the car is moving too fast. Parents can even get alerts when the app detects the vehicle is going faster than the speed limit.

As an incentive for teens to activate the app, the developer created a scoring system in which drivers are awarded points and gift cards for safe driving.


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