• Dec 21st 2008 at 6:32PM
  • 49
In the military it's called "mission creep," when the quick little job you intended to do turns into something big and ugly. In science, it's called "progress." What started out as a quick little way to keep folks from texting while driving has turned into a way to track how and where you drive so that that information can be reported to your insurance agency.
Key2SafeDriving utilizes a wireless transponder attached to your car key, which then communicates with software installed on your cell phone. When you slide the key out of the housing to start the car, the transponder enters "drive" mode and jams the cell phone that it's paired with, ensuring that the driver is unable to send texts or make phone calls. The transponder is paired with one particular phone, so no one but the driver is affected. That's the part that is supposed to make a lot of teens safer and a lot of parents happier.

But while the researchers were twiddling with the phone software, somehow they enabled it to keep track of the "vehicle's location, speed, sudden breaking [sic] and the running of lights." We have no idea how they managed to get your phone to know when you've run a red light or when you've stabbed the brakes, but that's what they're advertising. The upshot is that your driving data stored in the phone will be matched with a traffic database, and that information will be used to establish a "safety score" that will be sent to your insurance company each week. See how they did that? Teen safety turns into 1984. We think we'll just turn our phones off when we drive...

[Source: Drive.com.au]


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  • 49 Comments
      • 6 Years Ago
      what happens if they need to call 911 for help, maybe they have some sick o following them? or if the driver can be having a heart attack while their driving they cant use their phone? i know you say they should just pull over, if they need 911 well sometimes that can't be done, maybe driving on a hwy. i think this sucks! my kids are all grown now, but if they had cell phones as teens i would "NOT" want them tracking my kids. If parents did more parenting then they wouldn't need some dam crap track their kids.
      JOHN
      • 6 Years Ago
      Not such a great idea. It disables the driver's phone. So! They just use the phone of the person sitting next to them, causing even more time of eyes off the road because they are unfamiliar with the phone.

      Speaking of driving, did you know if you have Progressive insurance and you went to college, call them. You get a nice discount. I just found this out a few months ago. Also, I don't know of any other insurance company who does this, but they insure each pet in the car for up to $500.00. Not bad huh,?
      • 6 Years Ago
      Who didn't see something like this coming when they first announced this device?
      • 6 Years Ago
      this device, even if it sounds good, isnt practical. im 16 and everything that they say this device can do, i no how to get around it. most practicaly take the battery out of the phone and use my friends even if a i had to get it, i would "acidently" drop it untill it stopped working its just not practical if a parent is that concerned with there teens driveing, BUY A BLUE TOOTH
      • 6 Years Ago
      Simple solution: most phones now come with bluetooth. Some car navigation and entertainment systems from the factory also have bluetooth. Program it to disable any phone emmitting a signal from the driver's seat unless the phone is calling 911, or unless the phone is communicating to a hands-free set.
      • 6 Years Ago
      If the dang thing is so smart, let it make or receive calls if the car is in "park". No harm in that.
      • 6 Years Ago
      So what happens when you're in an accident and can't get the key out of the ignition but the car still has power? Better have Onstar! Haha
      • 6 Years Ago
      I'm glad I'm never buying another new car. I'll stick with my '82 Datsun and '95 Saturn until they die, then convert them to EV's or swap in another mill to keep them going.

      They can keep the big brother. I'll make due with legitimate cars and products.
      • 6 Years Ago
      im sure most teens can figure out how to disconnect from it.
      and as for the running lights and stuff, unless there is gps in the key phob its not likely
      • 6 Years Ago
      I think this 'phones cause accidents' thing has been blown way out of proportion. I know they cause a distraction from the road but its not the phone's fault, its the DRIVER. It's like saying guns kill people. Guns don't kill people. People kill people. Phones don't cause accidents. People cause accidents.
        • 6 Years Ago
        What happens if the person driving uses one of the passengers phones to call or text some one does that cell phone still work??
        • 6 Years Ago
        How right you are!

        Insurance companies getting my kids driving data without my consent? WOW. What else don't we know? Does On-Star have the authority to record all of my "in car singing" for homeland securities sake?
      • 6 Years Ago
      MARK OF THE BEAST
      Dani
      • 6 Years Ago
      What happens if you need to call 911 if you were in an accident or you have been kidnapped/hijacked in your own car???
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