Vox launches 911 app-based panic button

Integrated ICT and infrastructure provider Vox is introducing Vox 911, a mobile app-based panic button that helps family members to easily request for roadside assistance or emergency services, as well as notify friends and family instantly.

Apart from being able to send an emergency SMS to a select contact list – be it family, friends or even neighbours – the app gives users access to additional connected services such as roadside assistance, emergency medical services, and armed response or police.

“In an emergency, a Vox 911 user presses a panic button on their cell phone, which contacts the Vox 911 call centre. An operator then calls the user back, within 30 seconds on average, to find out what the emergency is. If unable to get through to the user, the call centre uses caller ID and location tracking to identify who the member is, where they are, and ensures there is an emergency response,” said Rudi Potgieter, senior product manager at Vox.

The user is sent an SMS notification to confirm that their panic alert has been received. Similar SMS notifications can also be sent to a list of family and friends to be contacted in case of an emergency.

Vox has a partnership with a national response network, ensuring that users are able to get countrywide coverage; whether medical, roadside assistance or physical security.

“You need just one subscription for a family of four. There is no call out fee for using any of the services, though there is a fair usage policy to prevent abuse. The app further allows the user to make voice recordings, with the message being forwarded to selected family and friends,” said Potgieter.

While the panic button service is currently based on a smartphone app, Vox said it is working on an Internet of Things wearable that is not dependent on being linked to a phone, giving users a way of contacting the call centre even if their device is stolen.

“While there are some similar services in the market, they are not as comprehensive as Vox 911. They either only operate in select major cities, do not connect to an emergency control centre, or do not integrate with private security, roadside assistance, or emergency services,” said Potgieter.

The panic button subscription costs R99.87 per month on a 24 month contract, or R109.95 per month, on a month to month basis – for a family of four users.


Read: New Vox fibre prices

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Vox launches 911 app-based panic button