New Device Puts Brakes on Texting While Driving


  • TextBuster

    TextBuster

    TextBuster puts an end to texting while driving. | November 20, 2012

Just the Facts:
  • A new tool called TextBuster prevents texting while driving and has already won praise from finicky Consumer Reports.
  • Consumer Reports calls TextBuster "simple and intriguing."
  • TextBuster uses a small module hidden under the dash and a downloadable phone app to send a blocking signal to the driver's phone via Bluetooth that prevents sending and receiving texts.

STEUBENVILLE, Ohio — For those with no self-control when they get behind the wheel, a new tool called TextBuster is designed to make texting and surfing the Internet while driving impossible.

TextBuster has already won praise from finicky Consumer Reports. It calls TextBuster "simple and intriguing."

TextBuster uses a small module hidden under the dash and a downloadable phone app to send a blocking signal to the driver's phone via Bluetooth that prevents sending and receiving texts.

Others in the car are unaffected and the driver still has access to GPS technology and phone calls. The device is password-protected, which prevents it from being disabled. It only works when the car's engine is running.

TextBuster, which starts at $179, has a bit of a Big Brother aspect to it as well. The device monitors any disabling attempts, sending an alert to the parent, guardian or account manager. It also can track the driver's speed and route history.

Texting while driving is one of the most dangerous of all distractions, the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration says, because it impairs the driver cognitively, visually and manually. Sending or receiving a text takes a driver's eyes from the road for an average of 4.6 seconds, the equivalent — at 55 mph — of driving the length of an entire football field blind, according to federal safety regulators.

Edmunds says: Parents and employers are expected to embrace devices like TextBuster — especially when there seems to be a shortage of common sense.

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