The Israeli App That Is About to Save Lives

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About two years ago, in 2014, Amir Elichai was walking along the beach when he was mugged by a  group of people. Amir immediately called an emergenency number to report – and was “investigated” on the phone with hard and complex questions to the point where he wished he hadn’t called at all.

Following this incident, Amir came up with the idea to make emergency response procesdures more efficient by using existing technologies and capabilties that every one of us has. After some research, Amir found out that the world of emergency response has been stuck with the same technologies, capabilities and procedures for a very long time.

Amir took his idea to Brig.Gen. Pinchas Buchris, the father of a classmate, who got excited over the idea. He brought Lital Leshem to the project – and there they took off. Development, marketing and seeking funds.

In a similar process simultaenously, Alex Dizengof, a computer science graduate from Bar Ilan University, has developed along with prof. Gal Kaminka a smartphone-based ability to locate someone inside a structure (as GPS is only effective outside). Alex turned to Amir in order to use the latter’s background in raising funds for companies, and instead received an offer from his to join efforts and cooperate.

At the start of 2015 tthe three founders arrived to showcase the company to Ehud Barak, the former Prime Minister of Israel, who was greatly impressed and invested about 1.5 million dollars in the firm – from his own money. Today the company employees fourteen people, eight of them are developers. The company is now closing a first substantial fund raising round.

Reporty is a system which is based on end-devices (smartphones)’ application and a connection to emergency call centers. The app (for both iPhone and Android) provides the ability to communicate fast to emergency centers, without having to rely on the available communications platform (cellular, Wi-Fi). Once contact with the center is made, a video call is established and important personal details are transferred (caller ID, exact geographic location, whereabouts inside a building, chat call and more).

unnamed (2)A system which isn’t being used everyday, will probably not operate properly during emergency. For that reason, Reporty added everyday options to the application: Features such as Reporteam – a connection of five close contacts to receive an automatic report during emergencies (which also contributes to the app’s virality), the ability to send instant messages with different icons, SpotMe – a request from a friend or family member “to watch over” the user along a certain route or a given time phrame, to make sure the user has arrived home safely.

On the emergency center’s end, a Reporty station can be installed which stand-alone, through which operators can see emergency calls, or alternatively integrated with the center’s command and control system, so that all the information from the App, arriving in real-time, enters automatically into the operator’s emergency system. Such integration has already taken place with Israel’s emergency medical services (MDA).

Reporty’s official launch was about a week ago, and already more then 22,000 Israeli users downloaded the application. On Saturday the first life was saved, when a Reporty user walked around a shopping center and saw suddenly a mother and her child, the mother holding the baby and screaming that he is suffocating – the baby was already turning blue and convulting. The app was turned on, the operator saw the baby live and instructed those present how to treat him and save his life.

Reporty’s vision is to become a global standard in the field of emergency response – in order to help save human lives. According to Lital Leshem, co-founder and VP business development, in about three years the company sees itself operating offices in Asia, US, and Europe, with over a million users around the world.