It goes without saying that cell phones have revolutionized communication, shrinking the world and ensuring that no one is ever truly alone.
At least, when they have service.
As related to Fast Company, being without cell service or Wi-Fi during Hurricane Sandy inspired Danilea Perdomo to create a better form of communication. The result is GoTenna.
GoTenna uses low-frequency radio waves to allow users to communicate with each other. This “peer-to-peer” setup doesn’t require access to a cell or Wi-Fi network although, as with those forms of communication, the signal can be limited depending on the circumstances.
Power outages won’t stop anyone holding GoTenna’s five-inch wand, but the signal still won’t pass through concrete. Strength varies from one mile in urban conditions, to up to 50 miles in open spaces.
The device is compatible with iOS and Android phones, as long as it’s within 20 feet of one. The service offers texting but no photo or video messaging. It can also send a “shout” to any GoTenna user in the vicinity.
The de-centralized nature of GoTenna also enhances privacy. The system even encrypts each message, assigning a randomly-generated number for users that doesn’t sync with a phone’s address book.
GoTenna is available now, starting at $149.99 per set.