February 18, 2015 12:00 pm
Updated: February 18, 2015 8:53 pm

Calgary-based company releases OneTap app to combat distracted driving

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CALGARY – A Calgary-based company has released a new app aimed at putting an end to distracted driving in Canada.

AppColony Founder Ted Hellard unveiled OneTap at a news conference with Calgary Police Chief Rick Hanson on Wednesday.

The app, which is free but only available on Android phones, uses GPS technology to automatically sense when a user is driving and block out pings, rings and other notifications that pull our attention away from the road.

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However, AppColony says OneTap doesn’t just block alerts while you drive, and instead intelligently manages calls, texts and notifications.

“The app responds to calls and texts for you, letting people know you’re on the road and even when you’ll be available,” explains an AppColony YouTube video.

In addition, if you are receiving an urgent call, the app will prompt you to pull over to answer.

Once you’ve reached your destination, the app gives you a quick summary of all the incoming calls and messages you’ve missed so you can respond.

“Knowing that OneTap is responding on your behalf significantly relieves the nervous anxiety that all too often results in making a poor, dangerous decision,” says the mobile software company.

READ MORE: Alberta considers tougher legislation on distracted driving

Since 2008, ten Canadian provinces and two territories have enacted new laws to restrict the use of handheld devices in vehicles—the primary cause of distracted driving.

“Distracted driving is a huge issue and a priority for all levels of law enforcement,” says Hanson. “While enforcement and education are essential in addressing the problem of distracted driving, we feel technology-based solutions are also a necessary tool.

“The Calgary Police Service supports the use of any technology that discourages drivers from picking up their phones when they’re driving.”

OneTap will transform driving in the same manner seatbelts did for previous generations,” notes Hellard. “We want to keep drivers safe and connected, and we want to work with Canadians, law enforcement, governments and like-minded companies to make that happen.”

The company says they are in the process of developing a version of the app for Apple’s operating systems that would allow it to be used on iPhones and iPads, as well as a French version.

For more information about OneTap, visit getOneTap.com or www.twitter.com/getOneTap.

WATCH: Learn more about the OneTap app from from AppColony 

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