Distress Signal App Offers Emergency Contact for Travellers

Travellers visiting foreign countries may now install an Android app in their smartphones, which could help them contact emergency services if required.

The new app is called Distress Signal, and is being marketed as an ideal companion for British people travelling to foreign countries. The app uses SMS and GPS services to track the person requiring help, and may be a life saver in case of emergencies. It will send a text message with information on location, name, blood group, any allergies, and any other important information to the local emergency services from the user’s smartphone. The new app is also available for iPhone devices.

David Nurse, the managing director of Mesh Trading Ltd, the company that makes the app, said, ‘I realised that millions go abroad each year but wouldn’t know what number to call if they fell ill or were in an accident. Time is of the essence in an emergency, and if you don’t speak the language or know where you are, even if you get the number you might not be able to explain your situation.

That’s why I came up with Distress Signal. I realised that we could use the emergency SMS service developed for those with hearing problems to make it quick and easy for anyone to alert the police, ambulance or fire brigade. It means you don’t waste time and get help quickly.’

David, who himself has fallen sick abroad, where he didn’t know the local language, said, ‘It’s perfect if you don’t know where you are, don’t speak the language of the country you are in, can’t talk because of an intruder or medical problem, don’t have enough signal for a call, or just don’t have time to make the call, because time is critical!’

The texting feature currently is available in the UK, Ireland, China, Hong Kong, New Zealand, Philippines and Iceland. It is expected to be available across the US and Europe soon.

 

TripAdvisor Announces City Guides For 50 Travel Destinations

TripAdvisor City Guides are now available for 50 travel destinations worldwide.

TripAdvisor, a company that provides an online travel community for collating user-generated travel information, has doubled its existing mobile apps offering information on destinations around the world. The company is adding 30 new cities to its mobile application portfolio.

The apps will also be including new features for the Android platform. These will allow travellers to view local transit stations, generate customisable maps, and see itinerary proposals from travel experts. The apps also include user-generated reviews and opinions taken from the TripAdvisor community.

Adam Medros, the company vice president of global product, said, ‘Users have already raved about the ease of use and helpfulness of TripAdvisor City Guides, with more than a million app downloads to date. We are excited to bring more cities and enhanced functionality to travellers, and ultimately help them enjoy their trips even more.’

The 30 New City Guides that are now available in English include Athens, Austin, Bangkok, Madrid, Manchester, Marrakech, San Antonio, San Diego, Seattle, Budapest, Buenos Aires, Dubai, Miami, Milan, Montreal, Seoul, Shanghai, Singapore, Dublin, Edinburgh, Istanbul, Kuala Lumpur, New Orleans, Taipei, Philadelphia, Toronto, Prague, Vancouver, Rio de Janeiro, and Vienna.

The apps are available free of charge, both from Google’s Android Market or Apple’s App Store, for use in smart phones and similar devices.

Earlier, the company acquired US-based EveryTrail to provide mobile applications. EveryTrail offers a GPS-enabled publishing platform to construct outdoor tours and city guide applications for mobile devices.