While learning to drive can be undeniably stressful for the person undertaking the lessons, there’s little doubt that the entire experience is worse for parents. And it’s even worse when your child actually passes their test. You know that you have to let your kids go and grow and learn, but… have you seen how other people drive???
Your baby has a license to sit behind the wheel of a 1,500kg machine, travelling at a speed of up to 60 miles per hour, surrounded by other lunatics doing the same! And there is absolutely nothing you can do to protect them. And you thought that that the sleepless nights ended when they were a toddler! That’s why driving monitor apps are doing such big business. But are they any good?
What Do Parents Need to Know About Driving Monitor Apps?
What are driving monitor apps?
As the name implies, driving monitor apps have been devised to help you keep track of a person’s driving. They have a couple of different functions, including providing feedback on an individual’s driving performance, and tracking journeys to ensure that you always know where your loved ones are, in case they need help. And their aim is to support better driving, while bringing peace of mind to family members.
What are the different types of driving monitor apps?
There are two main types of driving monitor app, although the more advanced share both functions.
Telematic driving monitor apps, provide feedback on your driving performance. Working much like a ‘black box’ system found in aircraft, they deploy a GPS system to ascertain how you are responding to the driving conditions you find yourself in. They will alert you if your (or your child’s) driving performance falls below recommended safety standards. Helping you to learn as you drive. This form of monitor is often associated with a certain type of insurance premium. But they are also widely available for personal use.
If you have an iPhone, you will probably already be familiar with this form of app. Like ‘Find my Friends’, tracking apps are simply a way to keep track of your loved one’s location. Affectionately known as a ‘stalking app’, these can be a great way to ease parental anxiety. They can also be reassuring for new drivers, letting them know that if they ever do happen to have an accident, it won’t be long before someone notices and comes to find them. They also have the added bonus of providing support for the directionally challenged! If you don’t have a sat nav and struggle with directions, you can just phone Mum or Dad, ask them to look where you are and guide you back to where you should be!
Are driving monitor apps worth it?
If we’re speaking purely from a peace of mind perspective, then driving monitor apps are definitely worth considering. While privacy is paramount for teenagers, a tracking app can help reduce parental nagging and worry. You don’t have to spend time constantly checking in. And it can be reassuring to know that your parents are keeping an eye on your safety.
Telematic apps can also have their benefits. They can provide a really useful learning tool – for all drivers. But it’s really important for parents to remember that new drivers will make mistakes. So, don’t jump in with both feet if you notice that your kid has travelled at 32mph through a 30 zone or taken a corner a bit too quickly. Because we’re pretty sure that you’ve done those things too. The difference is that your child will have the information to monitor and manage their own performance. And if they pay attention to the app feedback without you breathing down their neck, they will become a better and safer driver over time.
Driving monitor apps can be a good way to at least ease the stress of having your child learn how to drive. But you have to research the best app for your needs. And then use it wisely. Always remembering that the very best way to keep your child safe on the road is to in invest in quality driving lessons.
Find out more about driving lessons with DGN.