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Crimes against women has been on the rise in Delhi and in other parts of the country. Having a device that can quickly get help to a woman in distress is an absolute must. Even though a lot of safety applications on mobile are available, there's still a need for a device that could be very quickly accessed during distress. To overcome this challenge, Leaf Wearables came up with Safer, an innovative product for womens' safety.
SAFER has a rust-proof, non-corrosive silver-colored casing, with a fashionable colored stone that has the safety mechanism below it. When you perceive a threat, click the stone on your SAFER jewelry TWICE. This will send an alert to your phone, which will then go out to the people you have designated as Guardians and other SAFER users nearby (called SAFER community). You can choose this option in your settings.
When you double-click your SAFER, it triggers the app, and there is a gentle vibration in both the pendant and the phone. After 30 seconds, an alert is sent to everyone you have chosen as your Guardian, and to other SAFER users nearby in the SAFER community. You can choose this option in settings, so that whoever is nearest can reach you and provide help. Because it takes TWO clicks to send an alert, the possibility of sending an alert message by mistake is very low. But it can still happen. The 30-second gap makes it impossible for the false alert to go out, because you will now have time to reach for your phone and disable the alert. In this way, SAFER makes sure that your loved ones do not get anxious without reason. SAFER is silent. Only you will know that you have double-clicked your SAFER (you get a discreet vibration from your jewelry to reassure you that the message has been sent). So there is no question of the attacker(s) disabling the alert you've sent out. Your phone will vibrate silently for a few seconds, to acknowledge your double-click.
In case your designated guardians don’t have the safer application, Guardians will get your alert message as an SMS. They will know that you need help, and where you are located. If you forget to carry your safer jewelry, the phone will beep to remind wearer that she is leaving a location without wearing her smart jewelry SAFER. SAFER jewelry and the SAFER app on your phone are linked. If you forget to carry your phone, the SAFER jewelry will beep to remind you that you have forgotten your phone.
SAFER’s battery can be monitored on the SAFER app, in the Device Settings option. The innovation emerged from the growing need for a safety device that could be quickly accessible.
The idea was to create something for women's safety. So they took a cue from the wearable devices being launched by Apple and Samsung, and were inspired to create a wearable jewelry that would look “cool” to wear, and also serve a safety purpose.
The co-founders are from top engineering colleges, namely IIT Delhi and Delhi College of Engineering. In December, 2012 the brutal gang rape on a public bus of the girl who came to be known as “Nirbhaya,” made a lot of people think about the safety of women. Whether they can move freely in a so-called free society. That’s when a group of friends came up with the idea of honing their skills and leveraging technology to create a device that is not only “cool” but also makes women feel secure.
The complete innovation is based on a mission to make women in India feel secure, by making a device that helps a woman reach out to her guardians, police, and other fellow SAFER users nearby in case she senses any danger to herself.
Manik Mehta: “Motivation behind the device was to make women feel safer in every part of the world. We wanted to prevent incidents that affect a girl mentally and physically. We wanted something to act as a protective shield for the woman who travels alone and keep her protected by her loved ones and laws of the country. We feel everyone in the world deserves to be safe, so we came up with SAFER. SAFER is a wearable safety jewelry in the form of a pendant currently. If you are in a dangerous situation all you need to do is double click on the pendant. The pendant is paired with a mobile application. It sends an alert with the location to our control room from where we broadcast it to your friends, family, nearest PCR van, and all the community members nearby so all of them can live track you via mobile application. It works on a 3 layer redundancy model. It works on the internet, if there is no internet it shifts down to SMS mode, and if there is no cellular network it still works on the SOS mode. Another smart feature of SAFER is the ‘Saferwalk’ which allows a user’s guardians to monitor her journey. In this case, a destination has to be entered and then the user’s selected guardian can track her reaching her destination in real-time. Once the person gets there safely, live tracking is disabled.”
The innovation is a jewelry pendant embedded with a safety device that helps women feel secure when they're alone. The company has already sold close to 4000 such pendants. They are aiming to sell close to 1-million within a time span of 2 years, which will directly make 1-million women safer.
Short term and long term effects of the device are the same, to enhance safety for women around the world. Currently, the device has brought a sense of a more secure environment to the lives of 4000 women. In the long run, with more acceptance of SAFER, a strong community of SAFER users will get developed to track any distressed women nearby by getting an alert from that user. Such a network affect will help improve safety of women in India and in other parts of the world.
The fact that within the launch of 3 months, the company has been able to sell 4000 such devices, has raised INR 5, 00,000 through crowd funding on “Ketto” and recognition by the Top 50 Startups of World, featured in the Best Technological Companies in India, as well as being part of the Prime Minister’s Delegation to the Silicon Valley in US. Those honors exemplify the impact that this company has been able to create.
Manik Mehta: “Impact has been huge. People from all around the globe have recognized the importance of our device. They have connected to the message which we wanted to convey through our product. We have received crowdfunding as people have "liked" our product and have valued its importance in the lives of women. In just 3 months we sold 4000 devices. People who have used SAFER have responded in a positive way, have felt more secure, and have recommended to their close ones to buy SAFER.
Leaf wearables has been included in the list of Top 10 Startups in the World. We have also won the Ericsson innovation award 2015 for SAFER.”
The Company has priced the product for a mere INR 3500/- making it very affordable for the masses. However, they sold the same for INR 2700/- to their early adopters. Jewelry that also performs as a safety device at such a reasonable price will help them reach the figure of 1 million SAFER users by 2017.
The innovation is a small step to make this society safe for everybody. The device creates a sense of personal security and safety. It gives people more freedom from worry because they will feel safer, which also makes their family and friends less worried.
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Manik Mehta, Co-Founder, treasurer