Dad Creates An App That Blocks A Child’s Phone Until He Calls Back

One father was so fed up with his son’s inability to respond quickly to his calls and texts, that he decided to teach him a lesson by taking it to a whole new level. Nick Herbert, father of a 13-year-old, is a product manager from the United Kingdom. He launched ReplyASAP – an app that allows its users to send urgent messages that cannot be ignored without the sender knowing it. The app is available on Google Play, and, as of 2017, was downloaded more than 75,000 times. That’s a lot of concerned parents right there.

When the recipient receives a message from the sender, an alarm goes off which can be shut off by choosing one of the options – either snooze or cancel it

Image credits: Nick Herbert/ReplyASAP

The recipient cannot close the app without choosing one of the buttons, as it appears over whatever the phone user was using at the time. When prompted, both of them send out an alert to the sender indicating that the recipient has seen the message. In addition, the sender is informed about which of the two buttons was pushed.

The messages can be sent instantly or scheduled to be sent later

Image credits: ReplyASAP

The app is currently available for Android users only and is free. However, if you want to connect it with more than one person, the price starts at $1.27. Nick Herbert mentioned that he will be releasing an iOS version in the near future.

Ben, the now 15-year-old son of the creator of the app, is like any other teenager – he likes playing Xbox and soccer with his friends

Image credits: ReplyASAP

He would also sometimes put his phone on silent and wouldn’t respond to his father’s messages and calls. “There’s been a few occasions where I’ve tried and tried and still nothing,” Herbert mentioned to the media. “It’s generally a culmination of, how can I get in contact with him if I need to?”

So, the father’s solution to the problem was ReplyASAP – a “safety mechanism”, as Nick Herbert has called it

Image credits: ReplyASAP

He said that it can also be used with elderly people or even your work colleagues if something urgent comes up unexpectedly. Herbert himself said that, luckily, ever since the release of the app, no real emergencies have occurred. Therefore, he has only used the app to tell his teenage son to come downstairs for dinner.

However, not everyone thinks of ReplyASAP as such a great idea

Image credits: Google Play

ReplyASAP on the Google Play has three stars out of five, and some people were commenting on the page that the idea of such an app is very controlling. Recently, one person commented: “I can assure you abusive and controlling significant others will utilize this. This is overall a horrible idea. Teach your child to respect you enough to call you, don’t let others suffer because you can’t be a decent parent.” Nick himself has responded to the comment by saying: “Thanks for your review of my app. Both parties have to agree to the app being installed and either can block the other, to mitigate the situation you mention. It is primarily about communication and safety, understanding that the app is for urgent messages if other means fail, as the child can contact the parent via the app too.” What do you think? Is it too much? Or is it a good safety measure to take to make sure your loved ones are safe?

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