It makes sense that parents would think using tracking apps on their phone or mobile device is adequate enough to monitor their teenagers’ every move. That’s what tracking apps (“Find My iPhone”) do—track the device and presumably the person along with it. But if teenagers are driving somewhere they know they shouldn’t be, they will also probably know how to turn off that tracking feature (or just the phone itself). More and more it’s recommended that parents consider installing a vehicle GPS tracking device instead.
Those cell phone tracking apps aren’t as accurate as we think. They don’t use the orbiting GPS satellites (which are extremely precise) to calculate a position like most vehicle tracking devices do. In fact, some phone tracking apps use pinging off of cell phone towers near the phone’s current location to determine coordinates (triangulation), giving a highly inaccurate result. Teens being monitored through a cell phone tracking app might not be at that supposed “location” at all—they could be many miles from it.
Holding Teens Responsible
GPS tracking systems installed directly on the vehicle enable parents to keep a watchful eye, via the account on a smartphone or mobile device application or computer, on where their teen is driving. They can track current heading, location, and speed (which comes in handy for verifying the teen is observing the speed limit). The vehicle GPS tracking system is virtually un-removable, unlike cell phone tracking apps, and many, like the electronic monitoring devices from Lifeguard GPS, maintain their charge by hooking into the car battery with little to no chance of losing power. Should the need ever arise, an installed GPS tracking system allows owners to find and report stolen or lost vehicles and many times get them back within a matter of hours. Additional features of the tracking system can help teens learn the need for vigilance in car maintenance; they can be programmed by manual input to remind car owners of tune ups, registration deadlines, oil changes, and tire preservation among other things, alerting parents of these upcoming dates by email or text message.
Vehicle GPS tracking systems allow parents more than ever to safeguard teens in their growing independence.