We’ve all heard those rumors about how our phones are spying on us, tracking our location, and listening to our every word in order to sell our information to advertising companies for a profit. Whether or not these things are true, they all have to do with technology’s involvement in our lives for the worse. But what if it was for the better?
Earlier this month, a New Jersey couple were hiking in Hartshorne Woods Park when they realized they were lost. James Prudenciano and his date, Paige Paruso, stumbled in the dark falling a few feet before landing on a cliff. The couple slid down the slope, and soon realized the danger they were in upon realizing 90-degree drop leading to rocks and water below them.
Paruso fell into the water below and suffered a few injuries, but was able to yell up to Prudenciano that she was still alive. Prudenciano feared for Paruso’s life and his own. He was preparing to say his final goodbyes when a voice rang out.
“911, what’s your emergency?” Prudenciano was stunned. It was his Apple Watch.
On September 21, 2018, Apple released the Series 4 Apple Watch with a fall detection feature. It senses the user’s motion, and if it thinks the user has fallen, it displays an alert asking if the user is alright. The user can either tap the “I’m OK” option or call 911. If the watch detects that the user is not moving, it calls the emergency number automatically.
This feature saved Prudenciano and Paruso’s lives. The watch automatically called 911 after sensing that Prudenciano was not moving for one minute. A rescue team found the couple using GPS technology and brought them to Hackensack Meridian Jersey Shore University Medical Center to treat their injuries.
Alive and well, the couple is grateful for their Apple Watch for saving their lives. It was not the first time technology has done something like this. The same Apple Watch feature detected a 67-year-old Norway man falling in his bathroom and called emergency services. Life support, vital monitors, and 3D-printed prosthetics have all come to change people’s lives for the better.
Whether or not your phone listens in on your conversation, there is no denying that technology in general is capable of saving lives.