Every year thousands of beach-goers find themselves caught in dangerous rips in Australian oceans, but a new mobile app has been designed to educate swimmers. Samsung has created this innovative smartphone app called Pocket Patrol. In today’s technology-oriented world, this Augmented Reality mobile app is certainly a great way of engaging with the beach-goers and educating them on beach safety. The new Android app aims to help people identify hazards before they jump in the water. Samsung releases the free Augmented Reality app to identify hidden hazards at Australian beaches.
Samsung Australia had trialed a free Augmented Reality mobile app called Pocket Petrol in partnership with Surf Life Saving Australia SLSA. The Android mobile app underwent a pilot run for four weeks at Queensland Coolum Beach and Alexandra Headland. The mobile app was piloted across beaches along the Sunshine Coast and was used by more than 2000 consumers.
Forget sharks, it is the rip current that presents the biggest danger to beach swimmers. In Australia, around 20 people die in a year because of the ocean rip currents with thousands more saved by lifeguards. The mobile app is meant to engage and educate beach-goers about ocean dangers. The mobile app is an education tool to help people become aware of what these hazards look like. The mobile app uses Augmented Reality technology
to superimpose the location of the hazard that has been identified by the lifeguards on duty at the beach on the day. The interactive Pocket Patrol mobile app – augmented reality app could be the way to teach beach-goers about safety.
It’s not a safety device,” Philip Newton, corporate vice president of Samsung Australia, told Mashable,
emphasizing it's not intended to replace lifesavers. "It's simply an education tool to
help people become aware of what these hazards look like."
Augmented Reality Mobile App. Samsung creates Pocket Patrol app
for Beach Safety in Australia. This newly developed Augmented Reality tool is used to generate awareness about riptides. Samsung has built the tool to ensure that it reflects the current beach conditions. At the beginning of the patrol, lifesavers will program the mobile app with the present hazards along the beach and they will keep updating after monitoring sea conditions throughout the day. The mobile app has been tailored to the condition and characteristic feature of each beach to include rips, deep holes, and submerged rocks. These can easily be identified by lifesavers but the public is unfamiliar with these conditions. The data provided is live data and change from day to day and also throughout the day as the tides come in and out.
Benefits from Augmented Reality Apps. If a user has the app downloaded to his smartphone
, he can visit a signpost beach checkpoint to sync the mobile app with any hazards – if programmed by the lifesavers. When looking at the app, the smartphone camera will expose a tangible beach with computer-generated signposts superimposed, with facts and strategies to avoid danger. Only if any hazard is identified on the beach, and is updated by the lifesavers, it will be visible to the user on his screen. In addition to using the phone's camera to add information graphics to the real world, the app also uses its GPS, compass, and gyroscope to accurately map the user's location. After downloading the app, users activate the device's camera to see real-time superimposed icons of hazards on the beach such as rips, submerged rocks, deep holes, and blue bottles.
Samsung and Surf Life Saving Australia team are in the process of collating the date and are in the process of adding new dimensions to this mobile app. The ultimate goal of the mobile app technology
is to use further promote beach safety on all Australian beaches. Taking a cue from Pokémon Go, Pocket Patrol is the first time that this AR technology and GPS have been used together to display hidden dangers in such a manner. It is indeed a merit to continue exploring the technology and see where it takes us. Recent Australian news - drones are now being used to prevent shark attacks off the coast of Australia. Every year Samsung looks at local real life problems affecting Australia and how technology can help support and solve the problem.