If you ever find yourself in danger, trying to whip out your phone, switch it on and open the Phone or Message app is just far too slow, especially when time is of the essence. So the makers of a new device had an idea: place an emergency panic button on the inside of a ring, which is connected to an app on your phone: press the button and help comes running. The Nimb ring does just that, and is now looking to scale-up its production.
How it works
The idea is simple: A ring with a panic button sends emergency alerts via Bluetooth to a pre-set list of contacts on your phone, including friends, family members, first responders, people nearby and other people you can specify in the Nimb app.
You would be unlikely to accidentally press the panic button on the ring — in theory at least — because you have to deliberately hold it down for 3 seconds. The button is also recessed and positioned to avoid accidentally responding to pressure. But once you do press it, the ring will gently vibrate, confirming that the signal has been sent to the Nimb app. Once activated, the Nimb will message relevant contacts with your GPS location and your profile details.
If you do send the alert but immediately realize that it is a false alarm, you can cancel it in the application using the pass-code 30 seconds after the alert activation. And in case someone is forcing you to cancel the alert, you can use a secret pass-code to indicate it was a forced cancellation, which makes your responders aware you may be under duress.
The idea of the Nimb doesn’t end there, however. The founders plan to create the Nimb Platform, connecting to “the best and fastest response teams” anywhere in the world anyone who is in need of help in case of an emergency. They want to transform emergency alerting, in the same way that Uber transformed personal transportation.
Part of the reason Nimb aims to be more of a platform than just a ring is that the Nimb app is how responders can respond, locking them into the platform, as well. Upon setup, the user will have to choose at least three contacts to be part of their “response team.” Once the contacts are entered, they will receive an SMS notification that a user has added them as a responder.
However, responders will still be notified in case of an emergency even if the app is not downloaded. Users will be able to add as many friends and family members as they want for free. But an extra monthly fee will be charged for access to monitoring stations that will be available 24/7 and will be able to call and coordinate any first response team.
The battery on the Nimb lasts for two weeks once fully charged, but it may last up to one month depending on usage. You can pre-order it now for $129. Once fully in production, the price will be $149. It comes in U.S. sizes from 3 to 12.
So far the startup says more than 2,500 rings have been pre-sold, with 500 of those sold after the Kickstarter campaign. That campaign raised more than $290,000 through crowdfunding and the startup is now fundraising from investors to go to the next level.
Nimb has as a team of five: Leo Bereschansky (founder and CEO), Nick Marshansky (founder and CMO), Alex Medvedev (CTO), Kathy Romanovskaya (communications director) and Davor Tomic (sales).
It’s early days for Nimb, and there are plenty of other “panic button” solutions out there (some hardware, but most are apps). If it can crack the market with a stylish piece of hardware that is also practical — and perhaps expands into more functions and alerts — Nimb could have a bright future.