Plano, TX (WiredPRNews.com) – Tango Networks™, a leader in Mobile Network integration is announcing the ground breaking Abrazo™ Safe Driving system for addressing distracted driving with any mobile phone.
The patent-pending Abrazo-SD enables Safe Driving Service Providers (SD-SP) to manage and control calling and texting when a target user is in a moving vehicle. Policies and restrictions are flexibly and dynamically managed and controlled by the SD-SP in the network cloud – not on the mobile device.
The technology is based on Tango Networks’ unique federated architecture, enabling any mobile phone operating on a participating mobile network to be managed by a SD-SP.
With Abrazo-SD, mobile carriers as well as third-party Safe Driving Service Providers can offer comprehensive Distracted Driving services for their subscribers tailored to specific market segments, including general mobile users, parents with teen drivers; insurance companies for policy holders; commercial and/or government fleets for taxi drivers and trucking operators; public transportation operators.
Currently available solutions in the market to address Distracted Driving employ “over-the-top” technologies – requiring a specific mobile device running a specific Operating System, and are therefore limited to select smartphones. These solutions require a software client that must be downloaded, installed and activated on the target user’s smartphone which must also support either a software-accessible GPS function or be connected via a Bluetooth wireless connection to a separate module plugged into the vehicle’s OBD port. With these “over-the-top” solutions, policy restrictions are managed and enforced on the target user’s device – not in the network cloud where they are secure.
In contrast, Abrazo-SD is a network-based solution that works with any phone operating on a participating mobile network, with no software client required and no changes in user behavior. The solution is enforceable and cannot be circumvented. Policies and restrictions can be dynamically changed in the network cloud and instantly applied to the target user’s subscription, based on location, local regulations, time-of-day, day-of-week, driving record, traffic information, or other information.
Opt-In and Mandatory enforcement models
The Abrazo-SD solution supports “Opt-In” and Mandatory enforcement models.
The Opt-In model applies only to subscribers to the Abrazo-SD service. The Opt-In model employs an in-vehicle-based mobile telematics module that is associated with the target users’ mobile subscriptions. The telematics module is a commercial-off-the-shelf plug-in accessory to the vehicle’s OBD port (all vehicles 1996 or later), and can also be integrated as a software-only upgrade to existing on-board telematics modules from automotive manufacturers. The telematics module represents a machine-to-machine active mobile that reports vehicle information to Abrazo-SD in the network, and operates independently of the target users’ mobile phones.
The Mandatory model, for School Zones or Construction Zones, applies to all mobile subscribers, irrespective of whether or not they are subscribed to the Abrazo-SD service. All mobile phones within a defined zone will be subjected to policy restrictions under specified conditions, providing an enforceable solution for controlling mobile phones within the specific restriction zones. The Mandatory solution does not require an in-vehicle telematics module. Instead, the system employs femtocells within the restriction zone. The solution provides a proactive means for safety enforcement for distracted driving that can also provide significant cost-savings to school districts, municipalities and governments.
Accountable Bypass with Recorded Consent
The overriding principle behind the Abrazo-SD solution is that fundamental responsibility for operating a mobile phone while operating a moving vehicle lies with the user.
The system utilizes the Abrazo policy engine’s customizable set of enforcement policies to restrict the user while also enabling the target user to optionally bypass the system while the vehicle is in motion, such that a call or text message can still be routed if required.
However, to proceed with bypassing the system the user must take deliberate action by responding to a prompt for reason with confirmation. This decision response can be recorded in the network cloud along with session details and can serve as a verifiable contract of accountability.
Example reasons for bypass can include an emergency text or call (emergency calls to 911 always route) must be routed; the target user is connected via a legal hands-free device; the target user is not currently the operator of the vehicle in motion.
The system can also enable the target user to take alternate actions. For example, the target user can elect to place an incoming call on hold until the vehicle comes to a stop. Calls that were begun when the vehicle was at rest that continue when the vehicle begins to move can provide the target user with warnings and options for alternate actions, such as to place the call on hold until the vehicle is stopped, or reroute the other party to the target user’s voicemail.
“The Abrazo-SD solution is unique in that it represents the only practical solution that can address the real world issues surrounding distracted driving for all mobile phones,” stated Alastair Westgarth, chief executive officer and president at Tango Networks. “With the concept of ‘Accountable Bypass with Recorded Consent’, the user’s ability to communicate is never compromised, while providing an enforceable means of accountability for their actions.”
About Tango Networks
Tango Networks enables mobile service providers to securely extend control of their networks to the edge. Based on a unique federated architecture, Tango Networks’ award-winning Abrazo Edge services platform results in specialized and tailored service capabilities that work with any mobile phone, providing value to mobile operators, enterprises, consumers and third-party service providers. Abrazo edge services include Enterprise Mobile PBX & Unified Communications, SIP Trunking, Multi-line, Policy Control and Safe Driving. For more information, visit us at www.tango-networks.com.