It's a sad fact of society that the need for personal safety devices exists. In America a woman is attacked every two minutes, a grim statistic that inspired Philadelphia-based entrepreneur Yasmine Mustafa to create Athena.
The device is a pendent that can be worn as a necklace or clipped to any item of clothing. It's reminiscent of the Misfit Shine or Jawbone UP Move fitness trackers – but this device does more than track steps. It can save a life.
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Activated by holding the button for three seconds, Athena sounds an 85db alarm – the same decibel level as a freight train– and sends a message to pre-determined friends and family automatically. Your chosen contacts will get a map showing your location, directions and the opportunity to call you or 911.
The team plans to engineer the device to call 911 automatically before the final product ships.
Roar – the company behind Athena – claims that "an unanticipated loud noise can serve as an effective deterrent in certain circumstances." The team is also working on engineering the alarm to be even louder.
"By introducing Roar's Athena, women can get help when they are in danger," Mustafa told Digital Trends. However, the company is also looking to tackle the underlying social issues that lead to violence against women.
"Our profits are cycled back into non-profits at the front lines of impacting the larger cultural issues that cause this problem to exist in our society," she continued.
The unit itself is water-resistant and boasts a three month battery life. It connects to your smartphone via Bluetooth in order to generate the GPS location and summon help via the app.
Athena is currently looking for funding on Indiegogo. It's already hit 74% of its $40,000 target in one day, and has 33 days left to run. $75 + shipping will buy you an Athena, before it rises to $100. Delivery is estimated for May 2016.
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