It cannot be denied; smartphones are becoming more of a necessity, now more than ever. Thanks to the vast options of apps available, now women can leave their houses feeling somewhat safer as compared to before with apps such as ‘Watch Over Me‘ and ‘Find Friends‘ that alerts selected people of your whereabouts.
I will admit, as much as I wanted to purchase an Android phone earlier this year – one of the reasons I bought an iPhone 5 was because I was paranoid about my safety and had become accustomed to using the Find Friends app which was already synced to a few of my close friends. It would alert them when I arrived home safely and track my whereabouts, and this gave me some sort of peace of mind.
Perhaps this is something you’d want to consider before making your next phone purchase – how your phone can play a part in your safety as opposed to merely being a tool to send Whatsapp messages and playing Candy Crush! The good news is that both Android and iPhone have a plethora of apps for this very purpose – it’s only a matter of researching what works for you!
Locally developed Watch Over Me is designed to keep track of what you’re doing; whether it be going out for a run, walking to your car, walking home, taking a cab, or meeting someone for the first time – and if you fail to check-in safely once you’re done, it will do the following actions:
✔ Automatic Alerts – Send an alert out to your emergency contacts via SMS, email, or Facebook
✔ GPS Tracking – Provide your emergency contacts with your most recent location via GPS
✔ Real-time recording – Turn on your iPhone’s camera + audio recording functions to let your loved ones know what’s going on.
The best thing? It does all this without you having to access the phone directly (which is often the case when you’re in an actual emergency).Unlike most safety apps out there, there is no need to reach for the phone and unlock it before you hit the panic button as a failure to check-in will immediately send out an alert.
However, if you can access your phone, just shake the phone and an alert will be sent out.
How do you know that this app would apply to a real life situation? The creator of this app is none other than Chin Xin-Ci who was almost abducted by a couple of would-be rapists in broad daylight at The Curve last year, and suffered from depression for months after as a consequence.
“Safety is a concept that does not exist, especially for urban women. Almost every woman has the experience of calling a friend when they are places that they feel unsafe,” said Xin-Ci.
“I hope more Malaysian women will use these types of applications. If something bad happens to you, at least people will know where you are and some evidence would be captured through the voice recorder and camera,” she added.
With over 40,000 downloads to date, the team of developers will soon be launching an extension of the app for parents to watch over their children’s whereabouts.
Do you have a safety app downloaded on to your phone?