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Wireless Invention Jams Teen Drivers' Cell Calls

samzenpus posted more than 5 years ago | from the you-can't-hear-me-now dept.

Cellphones 232

alphadogg writes "University of Utah researchers have invented technology that could come to be embraced by teenagers with the same enthusiasm they have for curfews and ID checks. And like those things, it could save their lives. Key2SafeDriving technology uses RFID or Bluetooth wireless capabilities to issue signals from car keys to cell phones to prevent drivers from talking on their phones or texting while driving. A company called Accendo LC of Kaysville, Utah has licensed the technology and is working to build it into commercial devices that could be on the market next year. The company is sorting out how to bring the technology to market, but one possibility is that it would be made available through cell phone service companies and could also be tied in with insurance companies, which might offer discounts for users."

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Can we get these court mandated? (0, Flamebait)

r2rknot (1102517) | more than 5 years ago | (#26094915)

Because I can think of a few adults that could use such a device!

Great Idea!! (5, Insightful)

TheMadcapZ (868196) | more than 5 years ago | (#26094991)

So if she is carjacked and raped, at least the assailant won't be burning up her Roll Over minutes!!

Re:Great Idea!! (4, Insightful)

FredFredrickson (1177871) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095025)

Car has flipped, but the battery is still connected- good thing I can't make an emergency phone call!

Re:Great Idea!! (3, Informative)

Shadow of Eternity (795165) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095163)

RTFA, 911 would be enabled.

Wheewww (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26095193)

I thought we might actually have to raise our kids right. Thank God for this technology!! Now I can ignore my kids again.

Re:Wheewww (1)

tedu_again (980692) | more than 5 years ago | (#26096449)

other people have kids too...

911, but not Mom? (4, Insightful)

dazedNconfuzed (154242) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095427)

Even if 911 is allowed, other highly relevant calls cannot be made.

This is like speed bumps: sounds good, until the ambulance or cop can't get to you in time because they have to go from 50 to 5 MPH periodically in the area, or can't move because they bottomed out the vehicle after hitting one at 50 after not seeing it.

How about facing the reality that bad things happen to stupid people doing stupid things, and teach kids to not be stupid? Proactively blocking their every move because they might do something dumb does not turn them into responsible adults.

Re:911, but not Mom? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26095493)

You can't teach stupid people not to be stupid. They can't learn in the first place, that's why they're stupid!

Re:911, but not Mom? (4, Insightful)

johnsonav (1098915) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095543)

How about facing the reality that bad things happen to stupid people doing stupid things, and teach kids to not be stupid?

I'm all for it. Stupid people should face the consequences of their actions. Teens who talk on their cells while driving are about as stupid as they come. Let 'em have it... I just don't want to be in the oncoming lane when they finally learn their lesson.

Re:911, but not Mom? (2, Insightful)

rmadmin (532701) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095683)

Yeah.. those stupid teens.. because adults never drive stupid.

My perception has been a little different. I've found EVERYONE to drive like idiots lately. I even have idiot moments.

Re:911, but not Mom? (3, Informative)

stoolpigeon (454276) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095727)

You can do the math - teens are stupendously bad drivers [ca.gov] compared to much of the rest of the population. Fortunately due to the financial component - it's not hard to collect a lot of information on accidents.

Re:911, but not Mom? (4, Insightful)

johnsonav (1098915) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095753)

Yeah.. those stupid teens.. because adults never drive stupid.

Teens are a group of people who have a very high rate of accidents compared to the general population. Society has no problem restricting the driving privileges of other high risk groups: the elderly, the vision impaired, and the drunk. What's so different about singling out one more high-risk group and protecting ourselves from the collateral damage they are more likely to cause?

Re:911, but not Mom? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26095891)

They have no problem curbing the elderly? You're full of shit, and every wreck with them getting confused and barreling through a farmer's market proves it. Every time AARP shoots down a law requiring not revocation on age, but TESTING after a certain age to ensure safety proves you wrong.

They go after teens because teens have no rights or lobbies. Other groups fight like hell because they're made of people that have lobbies, money, power, and rights. Teens just take the brunt of everybody's shit because they have no rights or money.

That's not to say they're not bad drivers; they often are. It's just that claiming there's some kind of fairness on the issue is pretty myopic.

Re:911, but not Mom? (3, Insightful)

johnsonav (1098915) | more than 5 years ago | (#26096271)

Every time AARP shoots down a law requiring not revocation on age, but TESTING after a certain age to ensure safety proves you wrong.

All it proves is that the elderly turnout on election day dwarfs that of any other age group.

Teens just take the brunt of everybody's shit because they have no rights or money.

Teens are also one of a few groups that everyone has been a member of at one point. You'd think with all of us former teens, still scarred from society's relentless abuse, would rally around the cause of eliminating teenage oppression. But we don't. You know why? Most of us look back at how unbelievably stupid, reckless and irresponsible we were as teenagers. With age, comes some perspective.

It's just that claiming there's some kind of fairness on the issue is pretty myopic.

I never said it was fair, only justified.

Re:911, but not Mom? (2, Insightful)

pla (258480) | more than 5 years ago | (#26096311)

What's so different about singling out one more high-risk group and protecting ourselves from the collateral damage they are more likely to cause?

Because unlike other high-risk groups, teens get into more accidents largely due to mere inexperience - The cure for which involves, of all things, doing the activity they suck at more, not less.

Grandma's eyesight won't ever come back, but young drivers will learn when to pay more attention to the road than to their phone/radio/whatever.

Re:911, but not Mom? (1)

johnsonav (1098915) | more than 5 years ago | (#26096603)

Because unlike other high-risk groups, teens get into more accidents largely due to mere inexperience - The cure for which involves, of all things, doing the activity they suck at more, not less.

Yes, but can't society stop them from endangering us all, and restrict teen cell phone use until they gain that experience? Let them get good at driving first, then let them add distractions later.

Re:911, but not Mom? (0)

Ironica (124657) | more than 5 years ago | (#26096383)

Teens are a group of people who have a very high rate of accidents compared to the general population.

In other news, toddlers have a very high rate of falling down while running.

Re:911, but not Mom? (4, Funny)

Bozzio (183974) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095779)

.. because adults never drive stupidly .

There, I made you look less stupid.

Re:911, but not Mom? (1)

Sunrun (553558) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095553)

How about facing the reality that bad things happen to stupid people doing stupid things, and teach kids to not be stupid? Proactively blocking their every move because they might do something dumb does not turn them into responsible adults.

Amen! In fact, preventing them from learning by experience is likely to have the opposite effect of the one intended.

Re:911, but not Mom? (4, Insightful)

johnsonav (1098915) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095705)

In fact, preventing them from learning by experience is likely to have the opposite effect of the one intended.

You're absolutely right. I just don't want your learning experience to end in a head-on crash with my car.

Cars are dangerous. Driving your car is probably the most dangerous thing you do every day (unless your a Marine or firefighter) for yourself and others. You really think society should just toss kids the keys and let them learn on their own?

Re:911, but not Mom? (1)

L4m3rthanyou (1015323) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095821)

The problem there is that on the road, bad things can happen to people who are *not* doing anything stupid, as a result of someone else's stupidity. If that were not the case, I would agree with you- driving would introduce a much-needed instance of natural selection to the human race. Unfortunately, innocent people are often injured and killed on the road. We use speed bumps and other measures for their sake.

Re:911, but not Mom? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26095839)

The issue is that other people's stupid actions can be the death of people who are completely innocent. If it is just the idiot driver who gets injured or killed, hey I'm all for that. However, innocent people are often involved.

drivers talking on cell phones are almost as bad as drunk drivers in my opinion.

Re:911, but not Mom? (3, Insightful)

wonkavader (605434) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095843)

I hate speed bumps too, but "bad things happen to stupid people doing stupid things" ignores the corollary that "bad things happen to people who get hit by cars driven by stupid people doing stupid things"

I call BS (2, Insightful)

nobodyman (90587) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095897)

Even if 911 is allowed, other highly relevant calls cannot be made.

Please cite some examples of situations where 911 is not appropriate but yet you must make a phone call while driving? A call so important (but not important enough for 911) that it will actually make you safer if you do it while you are still driving instead of pulling to the side of the road or waiting for a stoplight.

How about facing the reality that bad things happen to stupid people doing stupid things, and teach kids to not be stupid?

That's all fine and good until stupid people start killing innocent people [realtechnews.com] . The problem is that they often bring other people into the equation.

Re:I call BS (1)

Ironica (124657) | more than 5 years ago | (#26096467)

Please cite some examples of situations where 911 is not appropriate but yet you must make a phone call while driving? A call so important (but not important enough for 911) that it will actually make you safer if you do it while you are still driving instead of pulling to the side of the road or waiting for a stoplight.

Easy: not everywhere has 911 service. Since it's a cell phone, you might normally have 911 available to you, but then leave the area without realizing it. Then, when someone's following you through a rural area with no safe place to pull in, you can't call 411 to get connected to the local Sheriff.

Or what if you're just lost? And, you happen to have gotten lost in Compton? You should pull over and turn off the car to call someone for directions?

Re:911, but not Mom? (1)

BaronHethorSamedi (970820) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095925)

Even if 911 is allowed, other highly relevant calls cannot be made.

Such as? I'm trying to think of a non-emergency call that's worth making/texting from behind the wheel, but I'm drawing a blank. Even most emergency calls can be more safely made with no loss in time by pulling over and turning off the car.

How about facing the reality that bad things happen to stupid people doing stupid things, and teach kids to not be stupid? Proactively blocking their every move because they might do something dumb does not turn them into responsible adults.

Ordinarily I agree with you 100%, but we're not talking about letting a kid smoke a whole pack of cigarettes to learn why smoking is bad. Bad things do indeed happen to stupid people doing stupid things, but when those stupid things also have tremendous potential to harm unrelated people who are behaving responsibly, then yes, it's a good idea to be "proactive." It's an obviously dangerous thing to be on the phone while you're driving. It's an insanely dangerous thing to be texting while behind the wheel. If it were only dangerous for the kid with the phone, I'd be on board with you, but I'm out on the road, too.

Re:911, but not Mom? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26096001)

...other highly relevant calls cannot be made.

Solution = whitelist.

Re:Great Idea!! (1)

FredFredrickson (1177871) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095689)

911 Is great, for areas that have a 911. For the rest of us..?? Will they allow all emergency numbers?

Re:Great Idea!! (0)

Cro Magnon (467622) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095759)

So, if the teen's car is stalled on the highway, s/he can call 911 but cannot call their towing service? Or their parents to let them know why they're 5 hours late?

Re:Great Idea!! (2, Informative)

tedu_again (980692) | more than 5 years ago | (#26096515)

If you are stalled on the highway, then you are clearly not driving on the highway and can use your phone just fine.

Re:Can we get these court mandated? (1)

ILuvRamen (1026668) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095337)

yeah, forget teenagers, put them in everyone's cars! If it's soooo important, they can pull over otherwise the people can wait until they get there. The only thing is, wrapping the end of your key in maybe tin foil but definitely a faraday screen material would probably make it work and that's pretty cheap to do.

Re:Can we get these court mandated? (1)

BlackSnake112 (912158) | more than 5 years ago | (#26096397)

Except that many cars will not run unless they receive that signal from said key as well. So stopping the signal means the car will not start. I am not sure if wrapping the key after the car is started matters.

um.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26094943)

so can any passenger in car use mobile phone?

Re:um.. (3, Informative)

Rinisari (521266) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095021)

It seems to me that it would be tied to a single phone. It would be illegal to blanket jam, if I'm recalling FCC regulations correctly. A jamming signal might impair the communications of a passing vehicle.

Re:um.. (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26095085)

Still prevents anyone in the car from using your phone. And it still allows you to use someone else's phone while driving. This is stupid and too easily defeated.

Re:um.. (1)

Ironica (124657) | more than 5 years ago | (#26096481)

Still prevents anyone in the car from using your phone. And it still allows you to use someone else's phone while driving. This is stupid and too easily defeated.

Not to mention, you can get a copy of your car key (granted, it may cost $100 if it's got an embedded chip, but still). Keep the key in the sleeve, use the copy to drive the car.

Jammed! (5, Funny)

Joe the Lesser (533425) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095007)

And it's raspberry!

Re:Jammed! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26095545)

Only one man would dare give me the raspberry, Lonestar!

Save a few steps. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26095035)

Just ban cellphone use in cars.

We're going to end up there anyway...

Hmm (5, Funny)

LegionKK (1298769) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095037)

Great, now we're going to have people texting with their arms outside the window.

Re:Hmm (2, Interesting)

Duradin (1261418) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095257)

I foresee the sales of tracphone and other pay as you go or prepaid phones increasing.

The teens will just have to remember to not use the unlocked normal phone when calling home.

Re:Hmm (1)

flitty (981864) | more than 5 years ago | (#26096079)

How dumb do they think teenagers are?
Hardhack: take said Jamming key to local Hardware store and have a copy made.
Hotswap: Ask friend in car for their cellphone.
Corrupted information: Hang up on every call from your parents and tell them "I don't know why I didn't get your call at 3:00 AM asking where I was didn't get through, must be that stupid key I'm using.."

So... stuck in car pileup = no cell phone 911? (-1)

digital photo (635872) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095045)

Is it just me or does this seem like a really bad idea?

Given that the most likely first reporters of such accidents are people in cars with cell phones, this kind of jamming technology would create a different kind of problem.

I also see a nice market springing up to disable to jam the jammers...

What's next? Jammers in various parts of a building?

As a technologist, it kinda bugs me to say this, but not every problem can or should be solved via technological solutions.

The idea proposed is just the kind of thing that can result in wasting money in a technological solution that hurts more than it helps.

WP.

Re:So... stuck in car pileup = no cell phone 911? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26095081)

I disagree; this is actually pretty cool... and I'll tell you why I feel that way:

If it just worked, I'd be amazed at the results, follow the discoveries. But there's something about it NOT working that reminds me this is the "cutting edge of the cutting edge".

This is when the rocket launch explodes on the pad, this is when the systems fail... and it shouts "humanity is working outside its limits, and we're pushing those limits every time we do something like this". I dig it when the REALLY REALLY smart people have issues with something... usually that's very cool stuff.

I should say when they have trouble with 'cell phones/jammers/technical/physics/electronics' kind of stuff. Not with women. We know they have trouble there already.... ;-)

Re:So... stuck in car pileup = no cell phone 911? (3, Insightful)

MindStalker (22827) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095127)

Apparently nobody bothered reading the article. The device is coupled with the cellphone and is provided by the cellphone company. It doesn't jam the phone it simply tells the phone not to make or receive calls. It does allow 911 calls.

Re:So... stuck in car pileup = no cell phone 911? (2, Funny)

BigRT (1405781) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095185)

You must be new here...

Re:So... stuck in car pileup = no cell phone 911? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26095491)

Assuming it works properly.

Re:So... stuck in car pileup = no cell phone 911? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26096007)

It's like you're stupid or something. The device has zero jamming capability. None. It can't jam a toilet let alone a cell phone. It's just a system that allows the phone to know it's in the car and the car is on. So the phone refuses calls. If it fails the only thing that will happen is they'll be able to make calls. Jesus.

Re:So... stuck in car pileup = no cell phone 911? (4, Informative)

gblackwo (1087063) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095147)

Try reading the article next time. This is a willingly used device. It also doesn't jam signals in any manner you are speaking of.

Re:So... stuck in car pileup = no cell phone 911? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26095957)

From TFA:

The system involves a device that envelops a car key and that signals the cell phone to prevent calls and texting when the key is removed from it. The cell phone would automatically steer callers into a voice mail system alerting them that the intended call recipient is driving and will return the call later (the system does enable 911 calling).

In theory, the technology could be used by adults, but the reality is they are more likely to have their kids use it. Though if insurance discounts are part of the mix, adults could be swayed to use it too.

Take out the key, you can use your phone. I think this is a fine notion for all cars, though teens are generally more trouble behind the wheel.

How many times do you need to _keep_on_driving_ while on the phone? 911 is probably it, and even then, unless someone's attacking you and you flee in your car, you should probably be pulled over while on the phone.

The only problem is that this means no one in the car can use their phone. If a passenger is texting or on the phone, not such a big deal, and it could be more helpful (say, getting directions). I'll say from personal experience, it's a lot easier to pull over and really figure out where you are, instead of trying to drive, read street signs, and figure out where to go while on the phone.

"Smart phones" already handle this (1)

Dr. Manhattan (29720) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095255)

My Palm Treo 650 can be locked so you can't use it w/o a password. Except you can always hit the "Make Emergency Call" button and, well, make an emergency call. (There was actually a small security issue [palmone.com] with this.)

I'm reasonably sure these guys have thought of at least that. I'm still not sure it's a useful idea, but I doubt that particular objection will hold.

Yeah but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26095059)

The technology to jam cell phones sounds pretty boring, but I am VERY interested in the technology to determine if the driver is a teen or not.

Title is misleading (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26095071)

The invention does not jam the cell it activates software. This is entirely different as a signal that jams the cell would cause the cell battery to run down early and will also disrupt nearby driver's conversations and signals. Not to mention jamming would be illegal.

Re:Title is misleading (1)

HTH NE1 (675604) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095939)

a signal that jams the cell would cause the cell battery to run down early

This is a Bluetooth device. It will also cause the cell battery to run down early.

Re:Title is misleading (2, Interesting)

HTH NE1 (675604) | more than 5 years ago | (#26096523)

I just realized, they don't need to make it a Bluetooth device paired to the car key at all. They just need to attach the phone to the key physically so that it can't be in use as a phone when its in the ignition. Tie them together with a short security chain and provide a little place in the dash to put the phone so it isn't hanging from the ignition. Need to answer/make a call or send a text message? You'll have to pull it from the ignition first.

No transmitters, no loss of charge, and you're less likely to lose your phone or your keys; just more likely to lock both your keys and your phone in the car.

Next, include the ability for the parents to send a text message code to the phone to stop the kid's car, and another code to control the door locks. (I could have used that that one time I locked my keys in my car with the lights on, heater on, and engine running in the parking garage.)

Re:Title is misleading (1)

clone53421 (1310749) | more than 5 years ago | (#26096675)

LOL! Bonus points if the phone automatically enters hands-free mode when the key is in the ignition.

Sure.... (-1)

TypoNAM (695420) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095075)

That's exactly what we want a car key to prevent our cell phone from working when we have a car accident and the damn thing screws up by continuing to prevent the cell phone from operating even when the car is dead. I can guarantee you this shit will happen due to retarded "solutions" like this if they ever see the light of day. How about instances where you're a passenger in the vehicle and this very thing prevents you from using your cell phone (or insert possibly distracting devices here that driver shouldn't use, like mp3 players) from operating? I can see that happening too.

How about going back to the drawing board and come up with something that is actually practical.

Re:Sure.... (5, Informative)

Talderas (1212466) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095119)

The car sends a signal to software on the phone that disables texting and calling any non-approved numbers. 911 is enabled by default and the parents can set further phone numbers which can be called.

E911 (0, Redundant)

Nicholas Evans (731773) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095107)

Anything that interferes with somebody's ability to dial 911 on a phone will be shot to pieces by the FCC.

The product is dead in the water.

Re:E911 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26095289)

Anything that interferes with somebody's ability to dial 911 on a phone will be shot to pieces by the FCC. The product is dead in the water.

The article VERY CLEARLY states that the cell phone can still call 911.

Next time I suggest reading before commenting.

Re:E911 (1)

ohxten (1248800) | more than 5 years ago | (#26096361)

if (strcmp(phone_number, "911")) == 0) {
place_call();
} else {
printf("Sorry kid!\n");
}

Shut up about the emergency situations, jeez (0, Redundant)

gblackwo (1087063) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095117)

This is not a jammer, it is a bluetooth device.

They would have to be idiots to lock out 911.

Even phones that you have lying around without an active subscription can make 911 calls.

Re:Shut up about the emergency situations, jeez (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26095437)

Fine you can dial 911, but what about numbers like *SP for the state police.
I think the idea is good, but it has a potential for problems.

Why not apply this feature to everyone? (2, Insightful)

ViennaSt (1138481) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095123)

Why allow anyone to access his or her cell phone in the car, whether or not they are a teen? Better yet, let's put breathalyzers in all cars to prevent all drunk driving. Let's have RFID chips in everyone's drivers license and make sure only those insured and registered on a vehicle are driving the car. Hey, if you aren't breaking the law then you have nothing to worry about, right? Yeah...going down the path of "safety" is a scary thing.

Re:Why not apply this feature to everyone? (1)

nobodyman (90587) | more than 5 years ago | (#26096325)

Jesus man, it's not like talking about some sort of vehicular Panopticon. It's an optional device for parents that prevents your kid from calling non-emergency numbers while driving.

Why don't we go the *other* way and make no effort to ensure safety whatsoever. No drivers license, no age requirement, no laws prohibiting drinking while driving either. Then you can happily drive your libertarian ass all around town, and we can all take bets on how long you'll survive.

Brilliant! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26095137)

Hopefully it will block outgoing calls after an accident as well!

Teens only? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26095139)

When I first read the title I immediately assumed they'd discovered how to determine age accurately and remotely.

Imagine, street lights that emit signals that jam cell calls if angst is detected.

If this is such a wonderful invention (2, Interesting)

Shadow of Eternity (795165) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095145)

Why not do what r2rknot said and mandate it for everyone? I live at the intersection of 2 roads that each go directly to the main entrance of 3 of the most populous central florida colleges and I find myself shouting "hang up and drive" almost exclusively at people who look to be in their mid 30s at least. Then again it IS a lot easier to just blame everything bad that happens on the road on teens and their terrible teen driving with teen cellphone use and teen teening teenager teen teening teenagers...

It occurs to me that if we stopped doing everything in our power to keep them from getting any experience driving or learning to drive safely that they might actually be better drivers. I can't be the only one that thinks that shite simulators, mandatory "here watch these gory movies" classes that make up drivers ed, and the flailing screaming fits of parents in the passenger seat that pass for practice are counter-productive to the desire for better teen drivers.

Re:If this is such a wonderful invention (1)

HTH NE1 (675604) | more than 5 years ago | (#26096139)

mandatory "here watch these gory movies" classes that make up drivers ed

I've never seen "Blood Flows Red on the Highway" or any of the like.

But I do remember those commercials reminding people to keep the seat-belts on their watermelons ("...or just lying there, stunned in the road" [squish]).

Hey, that reminds me: I don't have the movie Moving Violations (1985) [imdb.com] in my DVD library yet.

Re:If this is such a wonderful invention (1)

Shadow of Eternity (795165) | more than 5 years ago | (#26096689)

Lucky you. I even had to sit through an hour long presentation by two supposed EMT's where they walked us through what they do to someone they find at a crash site, which included a mandatory double-lung puncture with what looked like a 3 foot long Bic pen.

heres why it wont work (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26095205)

this is a really really DUMB idea... because there is no way it will work... what happens if they turn bluetooth off on their phone? what about a second phone? you would have to pair the phone to the car no matter what tech you use so that it doesnt stop other peoples phones (passengers, drivers in other cars, people walking by)

basically people will just use it to get a discount on insurance then just use a different phone, hell the savings on insurance may be close to paying for basic service or some prepaid minutes, then you will have MORE kids with cellphones... again DUMB IDEA. theres no real way to implement it. its the real world equivalent of digital copy protection, it will always be defeated, and all the time making it wasted...

Re:heres why it wont work (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26095353)

the only way it could work is if it was the in car phone not a hand held one but then its already pointless since its already hands free
(hands free = no driving problems)

Re:heres why it wont work (1)

YrWrstNtmr (564987) | more than 5 years ago | (#26096365)

(hands free = no driving problems)

Wrong [businesswire.com] .

Unsinkable (3, Funny)

CommandoCody (1154955) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095213)

Good thing no teenager is tech-savvy enough to bypass this. I hear they're working on a porn filter next.

Powered on how? (5, Informative)

phorm (591458) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095263)

So the key sheath what sends the signal... meaning that it's going to be extra expensive to lose/break/etc?

It seems to depend on a lot of factors that aren't going to go over very well:

a) You need the key

b) You need a supported phone

c) You need your phone tied to the key

d) The auto-response feature won't work against landlines or phones that don't support texting (in the ad it shows a text message).

Overall, it generally looks really fucking irritating. I avoid the phone when possible if I'm in the car, but there can be reasons to make a call when stopped etc (running late) or to receive calls in an emergency.

The question of "what if it's a business call" and the answer of "it'll text the caller that you're driving" isn't going to go over very well, nor it is going to when your mother calls 5-min in to say "your dad is in the hospital" while you're headed out to a 4h drive...

Jamming devices are ILLEGAL under FCC regs.... (-1, Redundant)

Ellis D. Tripp (755736) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095285)

Intentionally interfering with any licensed communication service (including cellphones) is a violation of FCC regs, and will bring down fines on the manufacturer of these things, and possibly people who install them.

The only way to accomplish this that would be legal would be to turn the car into a Faraday cage (screened windows, etc.), blocking reception PASSIVELY. Anything that radiates a signal of it's own to block reception is going to run afoul of the FCC.

Re:Jamming devices are ILLEGAL under FCC regs.... (1)

nvrzoso (1429799) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095377)

They could disable the phone itself through Bluetooth, thus bypassing any FCC regulations. It is equivocal to a parent turning off a child's video games at times when they should be doing homework. The phone still works for 911, just not anything else.

Re:Jamming devices are ILLEGAL under FCC regs.... (1)

TheRealZero (907390) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095395)

It doesn't jam anything. The phones would simply have a "drive mode" built in which would send incoming calls to voice mail and reply to texts with a message such as "I'm driving, ttyl". This mode would be activated via bluetooth or RF by the key fob.

Re:Jamming devices are ILLEGAL under FCC regs.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26095441)

Good THING it's not a jamming DEVICE which you WOULD know if YOU read more than THE headline.

Work on Suits? (2, Funny)

olddotter (638430) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095319)

I was once reared ended by a guy who stopped his phone conversation just long enough to say those scratches on his bumper are from the last person he ran into. Some people never learn!

Curfews saving lives? (1)

Leafheart (1120885) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095423)

That's the first I've seem about it since [b]V[/b]. Security saves lives. Properly trained, and armed law enforcements have the possibility to save lives. Curfew, not.

useless & easy to circumvent (4, Insightful)

shalla (642644) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095501)

So the biggest problem I see with this is that it essentially requires the driver to voluntarily use a matching key and cell phone that are sold as a set.

If the driver were going to voluntarily not talk on the cell phone, they could just not do it and save the money.

If you give this to a teenager and think this means they won't be texting or talking on a cell phone while driving, you need to spend more time with teenagers. As soon as there's another person with a cell phone in the car with them, they can borrow that cell phone to talk or text. If they're more devious (and have the money), they'll just get themselves another cell phone. If they really want to talk or text while driving, they will. This isn't going to stop them unless they're all alone in the car and very conscientious to begin with.

Giving it to adults as some sort of insurance incentive? That's a laugh. Adults are even worse than kids about working the system.

Re:useless & easy to circumvent (1)

l3prador (700532) | more than 5 years ago | (#26096095)

Also, it prevents passengers from using the driver's phone, or the driver from using his or her own phone while someone else is driving. Both of these are pretty common scenarios. I receive calls all the time when I am in the car, and I simply have the passenger answer my phone for me. I also sometimes let other people drive my car. This thing creates more problems than it solves.

Re:useless & easy to circumvent (3, Informative)

Lemmeoutada Collecti (588075) | more than 5 years ago | (#26096549)

Scenario 1: Driver is conscientious, doesn't use phone while driving anyway. - Key not needed, save the money.
Scenario 2: Driver is tech savvy, turns off bluetooth on phone while driving. - Driver can't use headset, driver can and will still make calls. Key not needed, save the money.
Scenario 3: Driver is smarter than a rock. - Driver copies key, uses bluetooth headset and makes calls anyway. Key not needed, save the money.
Scenario 4: Driver has friends. - Driver borrows phone, can't use bluetooth headset, makes calls anyway. Key not needed, save the money.
Scenario 5: Driver is psychopath. - Driver goes on a rampage because of parental failures, kills people randomly until driver is killed. Key not needed, save the money.

In summary, save the money.

Re:useless & easy to circumvent (1)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 5 years ago | (#26096403)

Giving it to adults as some sort of insurance incentive? That's a laugh.

If the insurance deduction is greater than the cost of the key + phone + service, who wouldn't do it?

Keep the special phone attached to a car charger and forget about it.

Re:useless & easy to circumvent (1)

swillden (191260) | more than 5 years ago | (#26096439)

So the biggest problem I see with this is that it essentially requires the driver to voluntarily use a matching key and cell phone that are sold as a set.

If the driver were going to voluntarily not talk on the cell phone, they could just not do it and save the money.

The driver doesn't have any choice in the matter, because the key, car and phone all belong to his or her parents, and THEY think it's worth the money to ensure their kid focuses on driving, rather than on a discussion who's going out with who.

As a parent of teens who will soon be driving, I see a lot of value in this.

Nanny state training (1)

Thundercleets (942968) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095517)

Between Ford making them slow down and stuff like this new adult will not know how to be responsible for anything. Never mind that schemes like this are doomed to failure as hacks for them reverberate around the Internet.

hey naysayers (1, Insightful)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095609)

you know what? this is a good thing

having your life taken away by a teenager yakking on their cellphone is a much greater impingement on your freedom

How Many Kids (2, Insightful)

TheNinjaroach (878876) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095613)

Will wreck their cars while messing around with their cell phone trying to get a good signal?

This is the wrong approach. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26095617)

Wouldn't it make more sense to allow these people to kill themselves rather than thinking up a bunch of ways to prevent it? You know they are just going to figure out a different way to get themselves killed anyway. I think the time and money would be better spent thinking up a bunch of ways to help protect innocent bystanders.

Car accident (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26095671)

What happens if they're in a bad accident and they need to call for 911? Phone disabled = no call.

How is this activated? How is this deactivated?

Can someone invent a device (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26095677)

That locks them out of the car altogether, say, until they turn 30?

Damn kids... (1)

Pinckney (1098477) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095741)

How hard is it to ignore a phone? Let it ring until you can pull over and call them back. It works for me.

waste of time (0, Redundant)

Orig_Club_Soda (983823) | more than 5 years ago | (#26095889)

Jamming cell phones is a federal crime.

Cell phone jamming technology. (1)

reginaldo (1412879) | more than 5 years ago | (#26096021)

I will only be satisfied when cell phone jamming makes my cell phone ooze strawberry jam.

-Hey,our cell phone has been jammed.
-What kind of jam?
-Tastes like strawberry, sir.
-Strawberry jam? Theres only one man that uses strawberry jam. LONESTAR!!!

ID checks save lives, eh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26096025)

Bet they believe the TSA keeps us safe too.

I've got a bridge to sell them.

An alternative suggestion (2, Funny)

deadhammer (576762) | more than 5 years ago | (#26096173)

Or you could, you know, trust your kids.

Do parents even do that anymore?

Shareware Technique (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26096221)

Learn from the Shareware model - disabling causes people to uninstall, annoy them enough and they behave as desired to make it stop. So embarrass/annoy them into not using the phone while driving - embed a recording saying "Johnny is being a bad boy by talking on his phone while driving" every 1-2 minutes or add this to whatever text messages he sends. (also sending email notification to parents when this message plays/copying all text messages sent while driving to the parents). This would allow use in emergencies where health/safety outweigh embarrassment while cracking down on calls to "My BFF Jill", etc.

Nothing a hammer or a tank of water can't fix. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26096435)

Has nobody done the trick of freezing someone's keys? (put in water, then in freezer?)

disabling this thing would be real easy.. at that point, why even get it? just trust the kids to not be idiots.

Bad solution for a bad technology (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26096521)

Why not provide a speech-to-text interface for phones, so people don't have to go hands on? Phones are getting ever more powerful, and my old Motorola RAZR has rudimentary speech recognition (quite inaccurate, I might add).

Because of the way people text, it's easy to encode speech into a text message. For instance, homonyms won't be a problem -- to, two, and too can all be the numeral 2. This reduces the processing required. Also, and this may be a problem in an of itself, the teens could speak their text language directly the to phone, using acronyms and non-standard parts of speech that the phone is programmed to recognize, furthering accuracy in the realm we are assuming.

OR, for christ's sake, use the goddamn voice communication feature of the device whilst piloting a large chunk of metal at high speeds.

Disabling the phone's functions is a cop out way of solving this problem. The problem is an inefficient technology exists for communication, and it NEEDS to be replaced with something that isn't completely stupid and costly by nature.

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