Tech-Savvy Dad Invents A Smartphone App That Forces Kids To Respond To Texts
Tags: opinion, Technology
By Amanda Froelich Truth Theory
Kids and teenagers have mastered the art of being rebellious, and that usually entails ignoring text messages from parents. Though understandable, it is still not acceptable in many households, which is why a London-based father created the app ReplyASAP which essentially forces kids to respond to text messages from their parents.
45-year-old Nick Herbert was inspired to develop ReplyASAP after realizing that his son wasn’t any easier to get ahold of despite having a phone on his person. He also recognized other parents’ struggles in getting their kids to respond to their text messages.
“My son started at Langley Park School for Boys a couple of years ago and has a smartphone. I thought this would make getting hold of him easier, but it doesn’t at all,” Herbert told SWNS. “In fact, he is always playing games and has the phone on silent. It drives me crazy.”
According to Oddity Central, ReplyASAP presently only works on Android smartphones. However, the tech-savvy dad is working on getting it code-ready for the Apple Store. When it is available on Apple devices, Herbert will be much happier. “It will alleviate the stress when I can’t get hold of him as I will know that he has seen my message,” he said.
Though the app is a teenager’s worst nightmare, it is helpful to parents — specifically the ones who can’t get ahold of their kids after curfew. When the app is installed, it makes it impossible for kids and teenagers to ignore messages. When they receive a text message from their one of their parents, for instance, the phone locks. The message takes over the home screen, and an alarm sounds until the message has been interacted with.
Herbert agrees that the app might make some teenagers hate their phones. As a result, he says ReplyASAP should only be used as a fail safe for parents to get in touch with their children. “As they are teenagers I realise they aren’t going to be massively keen. My son hasn’t really said anything negative about the app. It is all about him understanding why it’s there. If I have something important to say I will send an urgent message. Hopefully It will make things a bit easier,” said Herbert. “Will it be the bane of his life? Maybe! I’m not going to be using it all the time to speak to him. It is supposed to be a failsafe.”
The app is free to download but offers a series of plans depending on how many people the parent(s) want to connect to. The Bronze plan allows you to connect with one person for $1.28; the Silver lets you connect to four people at $3.21; the Gold plan covers 10 people for just $9; and, Platinum covers 20 numbers, at a price of $16.73.
While the concept is certainly unique, it is not without its flaws. Most of ReplyASAP’s negative reviews are a result of it costing money (which is to be expected). However, it turns out both parents and the kids have to have the internet turned on in order for it to work. Of course, there is also the argument that ReplyASAP is an invasion of privacy. Nonetheless, it is an unique innovation that has potential to keep parents and their kids better connected.
Read more: Parents of Narcissistic Children Commonly Do These 4 Things, Study Finds
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I am Luke Miller, content manager at Truth Theory and creator of Potential For Change. I like to blend psychology and spirituality to help you create more happiness in your life.Grab a copy of my free 33 Page Illustrated eBook- Psychology Meets Spirituality- Secrets To A Supercharged Life You Control Here