Bits blog for The New York Times
reports on the new app, which will cost users $2.00 a month per phone to use, and will be available exclusively for Sprint customers. The app, called "Sprint Drive First," is part of a ongoing initiative to prevent texting while driving and distracted drivers looking at their phones instead of the road.
The app disables use of a phone through GPS when the phone is moving faster than 10 miles per hour. Friends and family who might call or text a locked phone will receive a message that the person is driving and not available. The lock can be overridden by a two-button command.
The override command, however, does not go undetected. The account holder of the phone, or phones, will be notified when an override is done. So, parents who might get the app for their teenaged drivers can be immediately notified via their own phone if the override is completed.
Though, the override function was also put in place for commuters who might be in a taxi or bus, or are a passenger in a car. Regardless, the main focus of advertising for the Sprint Drive First app is toward parents and teenaged drivers, Sprint even encouraging parents to buy the app for their teenaged children.
has a video available which shows the app in action.
Distracted driving as well as texting while driving have become major problems, companies such as AT&T, Verizon and now Sprint helping to lessen the number of accidents from a distracted driver. Celebrities such as Oprah
have even taken "oaths" to never text while driving and some local governments have enacted a ban on texting or even browsing on a mobile phone in a car.