The equivalent of the 911 emergency number in the US is 112 on the other side of the pond, and the European Emergency Number Association (EENA), which created the pan-EU number, now argues that there can be an app for that.
At a recent conference, it touted the Pan-European Mobile Emergency App (PEMEA) not only as a supplementary way to reach the emergency authorities, but argued that the whole point of contact with them can be replaced by an app altogether. Granted, Android and iOS already offer Advanced Mobile Location (AML) services, sending the best geolocation your phone can muster to emergency services when you call the local number, yet the creator of the PEMEA app argues that:
I think apps are much more crucial than AML. Apps can deliver more data, while AML is just location. Also, AML will soon become a completely automatic function of emergency calls everywhere while apps will keep developing. They will be able to offer video calls, chatting, data concerning the user, and other added value services — that only apps can bring.
It's not hard to deduce why an app may be better suited to be your emergency contact intermediary - we often rely on instinct in such situations, and tapping an icon is easier than initiating a call, while a video stream within the app is worth a thousand of your stressed-out, mumbled words.
That is why we wanted to ask you if you would consider a similar idea to be suitable for the 911 centers in the US as well. The text-to-911
initiative was years in the making, after all, but is now gaining steam, and rising in popularity among the public, and an app may be the logical development, what do you think?