Wearable Tech World Feature Article
November 05, 2015

Roar for Good Presents Athena, the Real-Life Panic Button

Wearable tech has done some amazing things, and now Roar for Good's newest project, the Athena, is currently seeking funding on Indiegogo and looks to make life a little safer for those most at risk.

The Athena is a small round disk that clips to a user's clothing. A simple press of the small round disk allows it to act like a panic button, doing two things at once: one, firing off a text message of the user's current location to a set of earlier-defined emergency contacts, and two, giving forth an 85 decibel alarm “similar to fire alarm”. The button is recessed so as to prevent accidental activation — because no one wants the shrieking alarm to go off while, say, in the middle of a double feature — and is constructed of aluminum for extra durability and a touch of style. Wearable tech, after all, has to pay attention to style on at least some level. There's even a silent mode that works without the alarm, but still sends out the messages.

Unlike many common devices, the Athena isn't meant to be worn on the wrist. The device's cofounder, Yasmine Mustafa, noted that was deliberate. A self-defense class revealed to Mustafa that a wrist-mounted device can only be activated with one hand. Roar for Good hopes to add features to the device as time goes on, like being able to directly implant it into clothing, or having it directly connect to police in the area.

Having cleared its funding goal of $40,000 four-fold—it's up over $177,000 right now with half its funding cycle left to go—there are plenty of backers willing to get this little panic button in play. While this may not stop every assault, the combination of loud alarms and the ability to rapidly summon help certainly can't hurt. It might be a bit too passive a response for some; after all, all it really does is make a lot of contact very fast with emergency contacts or with anyone in the area thanks to the alarm. There's no doubt that making it clear that something's wrong, and exactly where it's going wrong, might prevent at least some incidents.

We've all seen what wearable tech can do before; it keeps us organized, healthy, and even entertained. Now we're seeing wearable tech that actively protects its user, and if it can save even one person, it's worth every nickel that's been invested in it so far. 

Edited by Kyle Piscioniere

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