Distracted driving. We are hearing about it everywhere we go. Yet, there are some people who can’t resist the siren call of their cell phone. Whether it’s an incoming text, or the phone is actually ringing (I know, who TALKS on their phones anymore??). Either way, it’s causing too many accidents and even deaths. Luckily there is a company, Location Labs, that is willing to save us from ourselves. They’re the makers of Safely Go/a>.
You can download the free app on Android, and then set it up. You can select 3 contacts that will always be able to call/text your phone, even if the app is running. You can also set a few apps that can always be used, such as Google Maps and other things you may require while on the road. When you hop in the car, as soon as you put your seat belt on, turn the app on. As you are driving the app will send calls to voicemail and respond to text messages with a message stating that you are currently driving, and will respond when you reach your destination (you can set up what you want it to say, and even have fun with the response and make it really funny).
The only “gotcha” with the app is that you have to turn it on manually, BUT you can find Safely partnering with Sprint. On Sprint if I have this service turned on through my Sprint Drive First controls, the app will detect when I’m driving (or when my child is driving) and enable the service automatically! If you aren’t using your carrier’s mobile safety features, then yes, you will have to remember to turn it on. I always say the best way to start a habit is by latching it onto another habit. I would latch turning this app on to buckling your seat belt Whether you do it prior to clicking in, or right after, being tied to something that is already so ingrained in your subconscious will help you in remembering to turn it on.
The auto reply features are not only helpful when driving, but you can turn it on while you do any number of tasks. Personally I set aside 20 minutes a day, when each of my children gets my undivided attention. During this time I can change my auto reply message to read “I’m currently spending some quality time with my kids, I’ll get back to you as soon as we are done. Thanks!” I would love it if the app would add a few different auto reply messages so I don’t have to re-type the message every time I’m doing a different task.
The company behind this app also has an app to help locate your family (again usually tied to your carrier). As my kids start using cell phones, you better believe I’m glad that there are apps like these, to help me make sure they are being safe out there (OK, and maybe super helpful to keep me safe as well)