Motherboard: Safe driving apps

You can tell your kids and yourself over and over again not to text and drive, not to check Facebook while driving, or not to check email and drive. But you know they do and be honest you've probably done it too.

You can actually block the apps that are tempting you or the kids while behind the wheel.

Cellcontrol. This app is subscription-based and it also involves a device inserted in the dashboard. It effectively blocks the teen from sending or receiving texts while driving. In addition, it can block the camera or the email while the vehicle is in motion. You have to visit the company website to start the process.

DriveSafe Mode offers similar features, but delivered in a different way. It will disable the phone when the vehicle is moving but it also prevents the use of the keyboard -- thereby making it tough to text. However emergency numbers like mom or dad or 911 are always accessible.

The LifeSaver app reduces the distracted text and driving temptation caused by smartphones. LifeSaver runs silently in the background and automatically wakes up to lock the phone when driving. An in-app dashboard lets you score and reward the kids for safer driving.

All the apps are similar, but work in different ways with varying free features. The best advice is to try the app, especially the free features, to see what works for you.

And many people don't read app reviews -- but they can be a valuable way to see how the app works for real parents.

About the Author...
Rebecca Regnier
Rebecca Regnier is an award winning journalist. She hosts a television show called Rebecca Regnier’s Full Plate and writes a weekly newspaper humor column.