Thursday, 04 October 2012 11:11

Earthquake Buddy 'phones home' when you can't Featured


A new iPhone app aims to alert your friends or family if you are caught in an earthquake.

Earthquake Buddy is a $4.49 app that reports the user's location in the event of an earthquake.

It allows users to enter the details of up to four friends or family members, and if the phone is in an area affected by an earthquake of magnitude 5.5 or greater an email including a Google map of the phone's location is sent to those 'buddies'.

The email is sent from a server, as mobile networks often fail after an earthquake.

Earthquake Buddy also offers messaging via SMS, Twitter or Facebook.

Other features include 'flashlight' functionality, tips for earthquake situations, and provision for recording a video or audio message in case you are not found.

Adam Wells, CEO of Australia-based The App Collective which developed Earthquake Buddy, said "We were astonished to learn that most rescue services are often flummoxed at where to start finding missing victims of large earthquakes."

The app is being targeted at those planning to visit earthquake-prone areas such as Japan and California as well as residents of such regions.

It has been endorsed by Professor Ed Blakely, who led the Hurricane Katrina recovery.

"The app's ingenuity, coupled with the harnessing of community engagement, makes this the best rescue app in the world," he said.

An Android version of Earthquake Buddy should debut in the near future.Earthq


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Stephen Withers

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Stephen Withers is one of Australia¹s most experienced IT journalists, having begun his career in the days of 8-bit 'microcomputers'. He covers the gamut from gadgets to enterprise systems. In previous lives he has been an academic, a systems programmer, an IT support manager, and an online services manager. Stephen holds an honours degree in Management Sciences and a PhD in Industrial and Business Studies.



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