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cellCONTROL keeps mobile phones from working in moving cars

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January 23, 2012

When installed in a car, Scosche's cellCONTROL disables mobile phone use while the vehicle...

When installed in a car, Scosche's cellCONTROL disables mobile phone use while the vehicle is in motion

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Don't want your teenage kids using their mobile phone while they drive? Well, hopefully explaining the dangers to them will do the trick. If it doesn't, however, you could always install Scosche's cellCONTROL in your car. The device is activated whenever the vehicle is in motion, and uses a Bluetooth signal to disable calling functions, text messaging, email, app use and internet access on phones within the car.

The trigger device is installed in the vehicle's under-dash OBD-II interface, and reportedly doesn't need to be tended to in any way once it's been installed. Should a disgruntled driver attempt to "tend to" it, however, it will send you a text or email, letting you know that tampering has been attempted.

Welcome as the technology may be, there are a few limitations to cellCONTROL.

Most importantly, although it does work with Android, Blackberry, Windows Mobile and other popular operating systems, it doesn't work with Apple devices. At least, not yet. Also, in order for it to disable a phone, that phone must first have a Scosche-supplied app installed on it - so, if a friend hands your kid their phone, they can still use it.

Finally, if it detects a hands-free headset, it will allow phone calls to be made using it. Given how studies have shown that phone conversations distract drivers more than the phones themselves do, perhaps that feature should have been left out.

Nonetheless, if you'd like to give cellCONTROL a whirl, it can be purchased from the Scosche website for US$129.95. The company suggests that it could also be used in fleet vehicles, to keep employees off their phones.

Source: OhGizmo

About the Author
Ben Coxworth An experienced freelance writer, videographer and television producer, Ben's interest in all forms of innovation is particularly fanatical when it comes to human-powered transportation, film-making gear, environmentally-friendly technologies and anything that's designed to go underwater. He lives in Edmonton, Alberta, where he spends a lot of time going over the handlebars of his mountain bike, hanging out in off-leash parks, and wishing the Pacific Ocean wasn't so far away.   All articles by Ben Coxworth
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12 Comments

This is a no-brainer. Only took 10 years to develop. By the time our legislators figure it out we'll be communicating by telepathy.

Eddie
23rd January, 2012 @ 02:52 pm PST

What stops the user from uninstalling the app?

Paul van Dinther
23rd January, 2012 @ 03:37 pm PST

God forbid we just thoroughly train and test people before granting them a driver license.

bramachari
23rd January, 2012 @ 03:43 pm PST

That is illegal in the US. You can not block radios transmission, cell phones included.

Joseph J Shimandle
23rd January, 2012 @ 03:49 pm PST

Stupid idea, I imagine pedestrians will become quite irate when their calls are interrupted by this device installed in cars driving by.

Michael Gene
23rd January, 2012 @ 05:17 pm PST

I think it's a terrible idea.

No passengers can use cells either? Neighbouring cars? Pedestrians?

Adrien
23rd January, 2012 @ 06:45 pm PST

@Joseph: I don't think this is actually "blocking" anyone's signals. It only prevents the use of the phone which the "stealth" program resides on.

@Michael: It won't affect pedestrians - in fact, they should be thankful as they are safer when cars using this device pass by!

@Adrien Please see my note to Joseph (above).

I think it's a good idea, as it seems impossible to get people to control themselves...

agulesin
24th January, 2012 @ 05:36 am PST

Guess what google navigation needs to download live driving directions..

..internet access.

Congratulations to the concept testing team for their spectacular fail lol

Dewi Owen
24th January, 2012 @ 09:12 am PST

I don't believe you can run stealth applications on smart phones. So no 911 calls or On Star analogs which are handset based? I understand the risks posed by driving impaired but this is another knee jerk techno whiz bang solution with unforeseen consequences. Face it, it is impossible to protect people form themselves. We can only educate and inculcate behavior beneficial to others.

rik.warren
24th January, 2012 @ 09:20 am PST

I hope they make one that can be used in movie theatres.

Nelson
24th January, 2012 @ 12:02 pm PST

"...and uses a Bluetooth signal to disable calling functions, text messaging, email, app use and internet access on phones within the car."

I normally have the Bluetooth feature turned off on my phone unless I'm using it. Unless the installed companion app turns Bluetooth on, this can be circumvented by anyone.

Gene Jordan
24th January, 2012 @ 10:10 pm PST

uh...and this gigantic black box with the bright blue label on it that says "cellcontrol" won't make it obvious that this thing is causing your phone to not work when driving...what kid won't just pull it out of the car computer port and use the phone anyway? Good idea, bad implementation!

Ed
25th January, 2012 @ 02:13 pm PST
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