The Companion App Lets Your Friends Walk You Home At Night

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The Petty Room

An app named Companion is making waves and is helping a lot of people especially women feel safer as they commute on the way home.

Companion which runs on iOS and Android is an app designed by five students from the University of Michigan which allows solo travelers to connect with family, friends or public safety departments who can track them on their trip and get alerts if they run into trouble.

If you’re walking back home after dark through a questionable neighborhood. The app allows you to designate one of your smartphone contacts as a “companion,” letting that person know where you are and where you’re going.

The Companion app tracks you as you head home, asking you if you’re “OK” from time to time. If you don’t acknowledge the prompt by tapping a button, the app will notify your companion that you could be in trouble.

The app can also tell if you’re walking or have broken into a jog, and it can detect if your headphones have been removed from the jack. Any of these events can trigger a notification, sending a message to your designated friend or to law enforcement.

On top of calling the police and alerting their chosen companion, users can also select an ‘I am nervous’ button in the app, which tells the app where and when they feel unsafe.

“We are able to detect when you may be in a sketchy situation and automatically alert your companions with our real-time alert system,” the company says on its site.

People in other countries can still use the app by entering their phone number, together with country code. In an emergency, the app will call the police and send SMS text messages to chosen companions.

“We’ve had a lot of people outside the US downloading the app. Since we launched, we’ve had dozens of emails from people in the US, as well as many other countries like the UK, Belgium, France and Norway,” Lexie Ernst, co-founder of the Companion app.

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