New Delhi: Against the backdrop of spurt in violent crimes, especially against women, the government has started work on a plan to develop a wrist watch like safety device that can sense voice command of users and send alerts to the police and relatives in case of an emergency.

Efforts will also be made to add at least 30-minute video recording facility in the device, which may cost around Rs 500-700.

“This is at conceptual stage at the moment. We are going to freeze the concept in next four weeks and then with C-DAC (Centre for Development of Advanced Computing) and some others, we want to develop a device which can be worn on the wrist. In six months time we should be able to develop something,” Telecom and IT Minister Kapil Sibal told PTI.

Kapil Sibal. AFP

He said the device is not necessarily for women but anyone in distress can use it. “There are lot of incidents of aged people being attacked. Old people who live alone, there have been instance of attack. Any body in distress can use such a device,” Sibal said.

He said the device will react to voice command and trigger off many processes immediately like tracking location of person in problem and send alerts to phone numbers fed in the system.

“It is hopefully a kind of wrist watch which will react to voice. So if somebody says ‘help me’ it will trigger off many things. It will start GPS system working, people whose number are in the system will be informed of whats happening, where you are…trigger off phone calls. It could also start videography so that it records of what is happening,” he said. When asked about the expected cost of such a device, Sibal said it has to be affordable otherwise there is no purpose of such effort.

“If it will cost $100 or $150 then its of no use because any device which cost Rs 5-7 or 10 thousand, people cannot afford it. Those who can afford, may not need it. Cost should be around Rs 500 or Rs 700. It is only then that something can be used on a mass scale,” Sibal said.

The idea of developing the device comes amid nation-wide outrage over a recent gang-rape in Delhi.
The victim, a paramedical student, was brutally raped and assaulted in a moving bus. She died of grievous injuries on December 29 in a Singapore hospital, where she was taken as last ditch effort to save her.

According to Communications and IT Ministry sources, preliminary discussions have already been held with Indian Telephone Industries (ITI) for commercial production, among the Ministry officials, DG CDAC and CMD ITI.

As per the preliminary proposal, the device will be in the form of a wrist watch and will be based on both Java and Android based applications with multilingual voice command system, SMS based SOS and Internet based alert and tracking system, official sources said.

Commercial production would be undertaken only after successful trials and on meeting the stringent tests of reliability and affordability, they added.


Publish date: January 14, 2013 8:33 pm| Modified date: January 14, 2013 8:33 pm

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