Watch Over Me is a safety app with an interesting story -- it was born out of a real-life abduction situation that left app co-founder Xin-Ci Chin uninjured, but badly shaken up. After her ordeal, she realized the futility of "panic button" apps that require you to open and press an alert button the middle of an attack. She became involved with Watch Over Me to provide people, in particular women, with a better alternative.
Watch Over Me sets itself apart with its automated tracking that allows you initiate tracking when your safety is a concern. You can select an activity like "jogging" and set an estimated duration for the activity. The app will then track you until you check-in safely. If you fail to check-in on time, the app will then send out alerts to emergency contacts with information to help them locate you. The app also offers a "shake to alarm" feature that activates emergency alerts and turns on the camera to record what is happening to you.
Watch Over Me also offers protection before you are in a crisis using crowd-sourced crime data (available in New York City, London, Leeds, Melbourne, Sydney, Kuala Lumpur & Bangkok). The app will alert you when you are entering a high crime area so you can be more aware of your surroundings. It also allows you to report any crime you witness, allowing you to warn others about a possible threatening situation.
Watch Over Me is available for free in the iOS App Store. The basic features are free and include up to 20-minutes of tracking, one emergency contact, Email & Facebook emergency messages only and no video recording. You can expand the available alert methods, the number of emergency contacts and add video with a monthly subscription of US$3.99.