This app, Companion – Never Walk Home Alone, lets you share your location with friend(s). They can follow you on a walk home or into an area you are unfamiliar with. I think this is a really nice idea. This is another example of using technology to help us.
It is far from perfect protection, but it is something. The friends you share your trip (walk home, etc.) with can follow your progress and are notified when you reach your destination (I assume when you indicate that to the app).
The only security it provides is that you can know very quickly if they are delayed. Still that is better than nothing and can let you contact local authorities quickly. I imagine it should also provide the police a much better indication that their truly is something worthy of quick investigation if you can show they notified me that they were just walking home, it has now been far too long and they are going away from home and not answering their phone…
Many people worry too much about risks but still risks are real and devising tools that will help people feel more secure and help us react quickly in those rare cases when something bad is happening will be a good thing for society.
Over time, if this app is successful all sorts of features could be added, to automatically provide emergency numbers for the area the person is located in, links to interested non-profits that provide safety resources, pin responses (that have a safe and contact the authorities answer), etc..
There are many uses for this that could be beneficial including for kids and the elderly and anyone at risk of getting lost. I imagine it could even be useful to share with someone you are trying to meet up with (you could both see where you each are). It would be useful if the app let you see both locations on 1 map (but I bet that isn’t an option yet).