Teenagers who use their mobile phones to send texts while driving could soon find Big Brother, or rather Big Parent, breathing down their necks, according to a report in The Observer (RoadSafe News, January ’09).
A new service called Textecution uses a phone’s in-built GPS system to detect how fast the handset is travelling. If the phone is moving quicker than 10mph, its messaging capability is immediately shut down. When the phone comes to a stop, for example at traffic lights or when parked, the driver is allowed to send texts again.
Textecution is one of several innovations resulting from growing concerns about drivers concentrating on their phones instead of on the road.
Textecution is a $10 application that can be downloaded in Britain or America on Google’s mobile phone platform Android. A parent registers their details with the service and installs it on their child’s phone, so that its movements will then be tracked by satellite. If the child tries to text while travelling at more than 10mph, the phone screen says, ‘you are moving too fast to use this application’.