Thomas Antony and Christin Immanuel George (right) pose with their laurels at the Indian Android Developer Contest
Imagine a pretty young lass walking carelessly along a deserted road.
A gang of goons hover around. She senses danger and presses a big button on her smartphone.
The thugs almost get at her — till like in the movies, two or three heroes come to her rescue. What the young woman did, is use her ‘Sentinel’.
While smartphones and mobile accessories are sneered at by the techno phobic, the same gadgets could play the role of your saviours.
That’s what 24-year-old Christin Immanuel George and his team found out when they set out on the path of making mobile applications. The young team launched this mission last December, when their start-up company — MindHelix Technologies — was opened in Kochi. Sentinel, their latest project that works on GPS, was released nearly a month ago.
“It is an application to help improve the security of women and can be installed on a smart phone. When the application is on and you press the big button, an alert goes to three phone numbers and email addresses you choose.
So when you are in trouble, your dear ones can come to your rescue at once. If the miscreants snatch your phone and switch it off, the application will still send an alert to the same people,” explains Christin, founder and CEO of MindHelix.
Three members of Christin’s core team — the fourth being himself — were final year engineering students at the time the company started its operations.
Thomas Antony, Christin’s cousin, took two of his classmates — Kallidil Kalidasan and Nandakumar K.S. — and joined Christin. “One day when we met over coffee, we came up with the idea of a tuk-tuk meter,” says Christin.
Auto rickshaw drivers cheating passengers by charging high fares have been an oft-heard complaint. To resolve the problem, the youngsters developed an application that would record the exact fare of travel from one place to another, depending on the location.
The team has won awards and honours for their ‘tuk tuk meter’ at the Indian Android Developer Contest, initiated by Webonise Lab, Pune and the mBillionth Award South Asia 2011.