Dad invents app that locks kids' phones until they message parents back

Dad invents app that locks kids' phones until they message parents back

When kids get to a certain age, they tend to enter a more rebellious phase. This rebelliousness manifests itself in a number of ways. And obviously, some instances are more extreme than others, however, often it will involve adopting a more stubborn attitude and refusing to, for example, read their parents' text messages.

In fact, one father from the UK was so frustrated by his son's persistent tendency to ignore his texts that, back in August 2017, he launched an app which allows parents to lock their kids' phones until they read their parents' message.

Nick Herbert, a divorced dad-of-one decided enough was enough when there seemed to be no end in sight as far as 15-year-old Ben's poor texting etiquette was concerned. The teenager would consistently miss urgent messages about how and what time he would get home, for instance.

Close up teenage girl friends using cell phones Credit: Getty

So, the 47-year-old project manager decided the only thing for it was to find a way to remotely take over Ben's phone by locking the screen and stopping him from using any of its features - until he reads the message.

The app, called RespondASAP, also sounds an alarm until the message is read, even if the phone is on silent.

If and when the kid does read the message, another message is sent back to the parent informing them of this. The child is also able to send urgent messages to their parents in the same way - a feature which Herbert decided to include when his son raised concerns about what he would do if he needed to send an urgent message to his parents.

RespondASAP is now available for other parents who continuously find themselves in the situation wherein their child stubbornly refuses to read their messages. It only works if both parent and child have downloaded the app.

Herbert claims more than 2,500 have since downloaded the 99p app since it first launched about two years ago.