RoadID has long made various fitness trackers and ID systems which help you monitor and map your rides. But their app has an interesting new feature called "eCrumb," which allows you to share your progress with your friends and family -- or contact them in an emergency.
Using the app you simply pass along a link via email or text to the contacts of your choice and anyone can see where you're riding, visualized on a map in real time. You can also include different bits of information like what activity you're doing and how long you plan to be out there.
The obvious application for this feature is to help someone meet up with you midway through a ride, for example. But the eCrumb function also touts itself as a way to alert your loved ones if you get lost or have an emergency. A "stationary alert" can notify anyone watching if you haven't been moving for five minutes, and if anyone needs to find you, your last known location will remain on the map like a homing beacon.
You can also customise your lock screen through the app, which will provide information like your name, emergency contacts, and medical data like allergies and blood type, should you need assistance.
I love the idea of being able to meet up with friends while I'm out biking, and I like the idea of notifying people where and when I'm going on a long ride -- that's what you're supposed to do, especially if you're heading to a remote area. But there is something a little weird about opting into a system of surveillance for the purpose of personal safety. I'm not sure I'd want my phone alerting people every time I stopped moving for five minutes (hey, maybe I was going to the bathroom!) and I wouldn't want people freaking out if I didn't return in the 2.5 hours I had originally allotted (hey, maybe I stopped for ice cream!).
But if I did get in a crash, for example, and I was laying by the road unconscious, I sure would love my lock screen to tell whoever found me to call my husband right away -- whether or not he was watching my ride progress on a map. [Road ID]