I can’t find my child! I’m worried about attending a concert while on holiday in Vegas. My child is taking a field trip to the museum; what if he has an emergency? I want to go hiking alone but don’t want to end up lost or not able get help if I get hurt. My new puppy rushed the front door, and wow, she ran so fast and has been lost for over 3 hours.
The idea of a personal tracker like no other came to G-ME co-founder Ana Arias when her son got separated from her for two hours in a park, putting her in a horrible position of panic and fear relatable to all of us.
Along with co-founder and CEO Pedro Herranz, they developed G-ME, a new IoT project from Madrid, and powered it with blockchain technology by the Crown community, including Crown co-founders Filip Major and Jan Brody.
Herranz gave Novobrief an interview about G-ME, just prior to their G-ME IndieGoGo launch.
Normally, blockchain relates to virtual things like bitcoin and tokenization, but this time, blockchain is being used for a tangible yet emotional product that anyone can operate and understand. Pedro mentioned how this is one of the first IoTs backed by the blockchain, which is the only technology that supports the security of the information on the G-ME.
He said that the way the G-ME unit works is that when a person pushes the SOS button preset information is given and phone calls are made through 3G technology, all of which was programmed ahead of time, by the account holder in a customized way.
For example, if a child’s school owns G-MEs and passes one out to each student for an off-property athletic, scholastic, or field trip event, then the teacher, school, parents/guardians, and alternative emergency contacts could all be notified if a student is experiencing an emergency like being lost, hurt, or in danger. Also, the unit shows a QR code that can be scanned by any cell phone to give important medical, social, or other related information to emergency responders.
Herranz detailed that the unit can be set to “mark the location” of the wearer every second or every minute, etc. so that the user can customize the frequency of contact and thus the adjust the life of the battery’s charge. This also makes the device a GPS tracker with 3G technology so that the user can find the G-ME device from anywhere they can access the account (for example, a cell phone or computer).
The units can be purchased and kept for sole use by anyone as a single user. Additionally, the units could even be purchased by large organizations and rented for specific events such as hiking in a park, going to a museum, taking a city tour, attending a concert, or being a patient in a hospital. Prices for the units and the monthly service are based upon the number being purchased and maintained by the buyer.
One can only imagine the difference this kind of device could make in the event of a tragedy like the terrorist concert shooting at Las Vegas in the US, terrorist personal or vehicle attacks too common around the world, or bombings like the Manchester Arena at Ariana Grande’s concert in the UK.
Even daily activities like running and dating will be safer, as the G-ME unit can be programmed to alert people if someone does not return from an activity within a specified time limit, and it can still be used while doing the activity too.
People with Alzheimer’s and their caregivers would be able to use the G-ME to locate each other or receive help.
Holiday shopping and other crowded affairs would be enjoyed with more peace of mind about becoming separated from loved ones.
On the other hand, remote adventurers would have an additional safety feature for a more enjoyable and protected experience. If there is 3G coverage in the area, then G-ME works.
People with debilitating concerns like diabetes, seizures, severe allergies, and such would have a reliable, consistent way to share critical medical information in emergencies as well as to receive further assistance from phone contacts.
Even conference attendees could get non-emergency help via the G-ME from a first-point-of-contact person at the event to help with finding locations or an extension cord.
Wayward pets and luggage could be more easily reunited with their owners, and roaming teenagers and toddlers could be located by their fretting families.
The user interface is in both English and Spanish to accommodate more users, and the unit is simple in its one-button usage for fumbling fingers or small children in an emergency.
The information itself is protected by blockchain technology, so no one but the user with the account can modify the information in the unit. This makes stealing a G-ME unit a waste and controls the validity of the G-ME’s information to be immutable and not able to be counterfeited. So, if an event attendee is given a rental G-ME that has their ticket as part of the information available via the QR code, they can receive secured admittance, have their code scanned for drawings or contact lists, and see their schedule.
The blockchain technology is through a relationship between G-ME founder and the Crown community, including their two co-founders, Filip Major and Jan Brody. Crown is a digital token and application platform with open-source and peer-to-peer technologies that has cryptocurrency as only a small portion of their goals.
G-ME comes with a magnetic charger that charges fully in 2 hours, and the while the tracking settings do impact the battery life, the battery should last approximately 3-10 days.
That extra battery time offers the user of a G-ME more assurance with things don’t go according to plans and disrupt schedules, like the Chilean man who survived in the Bolivian Amazon jungle for 9 days with the help of monkeys after he left his camp area and was swallowed in seconds by the wilderness.
For 2018, G-ME will be integrated into a payment system for the monthly service fee, all using Crown for security and ease of use. Pedro said that they will use the money saved by using blockchain technology and Crown platform for humanitarian projects and people. Pedro explained how the community of G-ME users will be the ones to decide the projects and people to receive those funds.