Who you gonna call? Ghosts and giant marshmallow men aside, Google has come up with a way to make sure its users can call on someone in case of an emergency.
Google's Trusted Contacts is a new app that automatically sends data to one's friends and family. Google defines it as a "personal safety app that opens a direct line of sharing between you and our loved ones".
Users of the app can choose certain people to add to their "Trusted Contacts" list. Usually, one would put family members, their closest friends or anyone the user thinks should know about his or her phone's activity status. If the user has an existing medical condition, his or her doctor can also be placed on this list. Users of the app can change the list whenever they want to.
Those on the Trusted Contacts list can see if the user is "active" once they open the app. They can know if the phone is connected and moving even if the user's device is offline, running out or has run out of juice.
This app is useful during moments when a user wants his or her whereabouts to be known especially if they feel unsafe. If the user is going home late at night, for example, he or she can proactively share their location to the people on the list. The same can be done when users find themselves in emergency situations such as natural calamities, terrorist attacks or any event that necessitates one to share his or her status.
The trusted contacts can also request for the user's location. Engadget mentions in its report that the user can approve or deny the request within five minutes. If the users are not able to reply, their location is automatically shared to the list.
The app is currently available on Android while iOs devices will soon follow. To get the app, one needs to have a Google account. Those on the Trusted Contacts list can view shared locations even if they do not have a Google account.