Review Snapshot
Pros

It discreetly tracks the driving habits of your children, from selt belt usage to sudden acceleration or braking. If the device sees that the car is being erratic, it will alert the driver to make changes to rectify the situation.

Cons

It's a costly product, currently selling for $299 plus a monthly subscription fee.

Verdict

This is absolute "must buy" for parents who want to monitor their children's driving habits.

Reviewed by:
Annie Oh : I am a 20-something freelance writer who specializes in technology and health re...Member Reputation 124 • 110 active Krits
Tiwi Drive Aware from Inthinc
Tiwi Drive Aware Review
Annie Oh rates this 4.5/5
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Tiwi Drive Aware detailed information
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Tiwi "Drive Aware" REVIEW - Here's the real scoop...

Name a parent's worst nightmare and many come to mind--piercings, going through the throes of puberty, and perhaps even their crazy obsession with Justin Bieber.  But most parents agree that the worst nightmare of all, Bieberisms put aside, is when they get their driver's license.

These fears aren't always irrational, according to CNET, which estimates over 6,000 teens die in vehicle accidents every year.

Luckily for those concerned about their children's safety, telematics service giant Inthinc has developed a monitoring device that tracks, and then records, your children's driving habits, called Tiwi Drive Aware.

What is Tiwi Drive Aware?

Tiwi Drive Aware, unbeknownst to your children, may be their worst nightmare--tracking, then recording, how they drive when you're not there.

The device, which mounts onto any standard vehicle windshield, works by tracking the car's movement in comparison to the car's location and any speed limits in the vicinity.  If it determines the car is being erratic--such as if they are speeding--a voice will alert them about it.  They can then choose to obey what the voice tells them to do, such as slowing down, or ignore it.  If the device sees that they are ignoring its suggestions, then it will send a notification to you via email, text, or phone. 

Its ability to track the car's location is also useful for parents who want to track where their children are going--such as a baseball game or the store.  If you don't trust your children just yet, you can use the device to monitor where they are going, while observing at what time they arrive at the destination.  If your children decide to avoid going to this destination and instead goes somewhere else, such as a boyfriend or girlfriend's house, you know they have been lying--and therefore can use the device as proof of their deceit.  

This, to unsuspecting teenagers, may be nightmarish, and may even reek of Orwellianism, but for parents, this can provide an additional layer of security and comfort, knowing that they can simply find their children's location just by using the device.

Cost

Not surprisingly, Tiwi Drive Aware is not cheap; expect to pay at least $299 for the device itself, plus a monthly fee of $35.  The price may be too much for some parents to afford, but for those who can, most of them say they'd easily pay this price over and over again if it meant being able to track their children's every movement.  And indeed, you will be receiving an innumerable amount of features, ranging from GPS tracking to tracking how erratically the car turns, speeds up, and even selt belt usage.

Consumer Response

Since its initial release, many parents have favored Tiwi Drive Aware, considering it an effective--but costly--measure to ensure their children are being truthful about their driving habits.  "I have it in my kids car and I have pulled the keys only twice and now the rules are followed," says one customer. "It is about discipline but how can you discipline if you don't know there is a problem."

"If this can eliminate just one senseless teen death, it's worth it," says another customer.  "Astounding technology!"

Other customers aren't necessarily happy about its GPS-tracking feature, however.  "I'm not sure about the GPS part yet...it kind of gives me the creeps," says a CNET.com customer. "Seems kinda big brother-ish."

Conclusion

If being able to track your children's driving habits offers you an additional layer of comfort, or if you want something that will instruct them to drive more safely, then Tiwi Drive Aware is worth the investment.  The device is easy to install and track your children's driving habits immediately.  Although the price is a concern, this is the only drawback to this product.  As an alternative, you can also choose to use the "I Drive Safely" Defensive Driving Course as a cheaper, less techy way to ensure your children know how to drive safely.
Date Reviewed: March 29, 2012, 7:58 am
Reviewed by Annie Oh
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