Life360 – More Than Meets the Eye

Life 360 for tracking families

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My 17-year-old daughter had her homecoming dance last night. After taking photos with her friends all dolled up, I hugged her and told her to let me know where she ended up for the evening (she was out with multiple friends, and it was a toss-up where the sleepover was going to happen). Did she call or text at midnight so I knew she was safe? Big fat nope. She was too busy having fun. Fortunately, I didn’t have to worry as my mother would have years ago. I simply pulled up my Life360 app. In seconds, I knew she was safe and sound.

How Does Life360 Work?

Life 360 Screenshots
Actual screenshots provided by D. Miller.

That’s the beauty of Life360. It uses a cell phone to help you know where the people you love are located without having to text them all day or night looking for updates. You can build circles of people you care about who agree to share their locations.

Then you can set up “places” to mark locations that are visited often. You can mark your home, your friend’s home, the kids’ school, etc. If you do that, you’ll get alerts when the people in your circle arrive at or leave these locations.

This is especially helpful for making sure younger kiddos make it home safe from school each day if you’re not there. Honestly, it’s even useful for making sure the older ones actually made it TO school. Of course, I’m not saying your darling angels aren’t where they’re supposed to be, but with this app, now you know if they’re not.

Life360 Driver Safety and Crash Detection

Woman after a car crash on her phone

Lfie360 was conceived back in 2005 after Hurricane Katrina. It launched in 2008 on the Google Play store. After eight years, Life360 added a paid option that offers crash detection and roadside assistance. Now, you’ll be notified about any collision over 25 miles an hour. So far, the app has monitored more than 10 billion miles of driving and dispatched over 15,000 ambulances to customers after detecting they were in a crash.

Additionally, you can get professional 24/7 help on the road. This includes jumpstarts, towing, lockouts, refueling, and more. If you have a driver in the family you’re worried about (not saying teens, but yeah, teens), you can get a weekly snapshot of their trips and miles driven. You can even see exactly how fast they were going, along with any texting or calling while driving. Safe driving will also earn you some lower insurance offers. Bonus!

However, safety goes beyond driving. There are options to send SOS alerts through the app so that your loved ones (or you) can send a silent, immediate alert with your location to family members and emergency contacts. That’s still free. And if you opt for the paid plan, you can research crime reports for any area where you’ll be going to make sure it’s a safe spot to visit.

Keeping More than Your Family Safe

How to Avoid Scams

All of the plans offer a data breach alert. But the paid plans offer even more, including ID theft alerts and even money for reimbursement if a hacker steals your funds. The gold plan, which runs about $15/month, will reimburse $25,000, and the platinum plan, which runs about $25/month, will give you back up to one million bucks for hacked funds, per person, per year. There’s even a phone replacement option for the different plans. The platinum plan also adds emergency assistance for disasters, along with medical assistance. Heck, there’s even travel support to help you plan before you take a trip, along with rebooking help if plans are changed and lost luggage help. I’m not sure if you’ve been traveling these days, but that kind of assistance can be priceless these days.

I know some people don’t love the idea of being monitored by an app, but here’s the thing: You have to get their permission to add them to your circle, which allows you to see their location. So if they’re opposed, you just don’t add them. If you’re worried about your privacy as a user, you can go to the privacy center in the app and make your own choices about how your information is used, stored, processed, and shared.

In Conclusion

All I can say is as a user for years now, I can say it’s been a life changer for my teen and me. Back when I was a teen (not THAT long ago, I swear), we needed strict curfews so that our parents weren’t stuck waiting up all night worrying about us. The Life360 app prevents that from happening these days. If you need to know where the teens are, it’s as easy as opening the app. However, if you need them home at a specific time, this can’t help with that. And after raising four teens, I’m not sure it’s possible to create an app to do that. Life360 can do a whole lot, but that goes down in the miracles department in my book.


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