See if any of these phone apps or devices can help you keep your hands on the steer wheel and your eyes on the road. I have noticed I have had to give a quick touch to the horn to get the drive in the lane next to me to stop coming into my lane because they are messing with their phone. Most all of us do it but spend some time and see if any new phone apps or phone devices can help you out.
Hands-Free Driving Devices
Several hands-free devices have hit the market and made for a safer driving experience.
Hands-Free Calling for Vehicles (Like OnStar)
OnStar revolutionized the way to place phone calls and receive help with hands-free driving in GM vehicles. Since then, several other models have come on the market to make hands-free calling available to everyone. Hands-free calling is not only helpful for when you’re lost or needing to find an address, but the system also allows you to “call home” or “call mom” without ever touching your phone. Speakers and microphones are built into the vehicle so that you can speak audibly and hold a conversation while keeping two hands on the road.
Built-in Dash, Hands-Free Tools to Command your Car
Some cars (like the new Ford Sync devices, among others) come with built-in tools where you can control your radio, air-conditioning and even your cell phone through an easy-to-use dashboard screen. Using Bluetooth technology, your cell phone can be programmed into your vehicle so you don’t need to reach for the phone while driving down the road to read a text, listen to a voice mail or even send a message.
Bluetooth Earpieces for Safer Driving
While they’re not new on the market, Bluetooth devices are worth mentioning. If you receive several calls and spend a lot of time behind the wheel, consider investing in a Bluetooth ear piece. This will help you keep your eyes on the road and hands on the wheel, without having to pick up your phone each time someone calls.
Voice-to-text Apps for Blackberry, iPhones and Androids
Several applications are on the market for cell phone users who want to receive and send texts while on the go. Several of these apps are available for a minimal one-time or monthly fee, and have improved road safety by getting drivers to stop texting while driving. Here are a few:
A popular app for cell phone users is “Voice on the Go.” This tool will allow you to speak into an earpiece that will translate your voice into emails, texts and even post on your Facebook and Twitter. You can listen to voice mails and delete them, and even call a friend, without once picking up your phone.
DriveSafe.ly is an easy app that can be turned off and on with one touch. When you enter the car, simply turn on the program and all of your text messages and emails will be read out loud the minute they are received.
Dragon dictation software is available for iPhone users who want to dictate a text and have it quickly sent hands-free.
Voice Text for Android
Androids also come with an app that allows you to voice text your messages rather than using a keypad, improving driver safety.
Stop Calls All-Together with Drive Assist
If you’re distracted even by hearing your texts read aloud, or having to think about how to speak a text, consider getting Drive Assist. Especially marketed to parents with teen drivers, this program allows you to “jam” your cell phone during your car trip so that you do not receive any calls, texts, messages or any other notification. Once you’ve arrived at your destination, you tell Drive Assist that your trip is over and your phone will once again receive calls and messages. It’s the best way to rid all distractions from your cell phone while driving.
State Bans on Handheld Cell Phones and Texting while Driving
Insurance companies and annoyed drivers tired of being cut-off by someone on their cell phone aren’t the only ones noticing how harmful talking and texting while driving has become. States have recognized the danger in handheld devices so much that several have placed bans on using phones while driving.
- 9 states have banned handheld devices while driving. (Not MO nor KS)
- 30 states do not allow novice drivers to use their cell phones while driving (including KS)
- 34 states have banned texting while driving (including KS)
Click here for a full list of which states have banned handheld cell phones and texting while driving.
Be safe ~