I am a parent of a child that is getting to the age where she will need to have a phone, and now I am not so scared. A new app was released called replyASAP that gives control back to the parents of their teens' phones.

The app was created by a father in the UK named Nick Herbert. He couldn't find an app that bypassed a silent mode and made his kids answer his messages, so he made it himself. There currently is an Android version available now but the iPhone version is still in development and expected to be released soon.

The app automatically takes over the front screen immediately and does not let your child bypass it until they answer. The best part is that an auditory alarm also goes off that they can not silence until they answer. (Reading that part for the first time made me chuckle).

The other cool part is that the app works both ways, in case your child urgently needs to get a hold of you. It is great unless your kid starts messaging you they are hungry or they want something. Just make sure they only use it for emergencies.

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