Life360 Inc.


Over 1,600 Families Across Japan Use Life360's Safety Check In During Earthquake


Ever since the massive earthquake and tsunami in Japan last week, the team at Life360 has been keeping our thoughts with all of the people who have been impacted by the tragedy.

In the past few days, many of our users and readers have asked us how families in Japan were able to use Life360 following the disaster. We shared the same concerns so we looked into our database to see what we could find out.

While our family safety service primarily has a U.S. audience (over 95% of our families are in the States), we saw that over 1,600 families in Japan (note: relative to the makeup of our user base, that would be hundreds of thousands of families in the U.S.) were able to use Life360’s mobile app following the earthquake to share their locations and reconnect with loved ones. Among those families, over 1,200 people actively sent a Check In which successfully delivered a message to their emergency contacts, providing their GPS coordinates and assurances that they were safe. For the exact numbers, please see the map at top.

Our records show that even in the heart of the disaster zone, SMS and data channels remained active when voice communications were overloaded (note: our voice system only works in North America), so we were able to capture almost all of our users’ locations and deliver 100% of messages that our server received via our email and push notification message servers. This allowed Life360 users to check on the status of their family members within seconds versus the hours or days it took many people who were relying on the phone system. While most people using Life360 in Japan were clearly outside of the danger zone (thank goodness), we’re glad to see that families all across the country were able to make use of Life360 to quickly and easily let their family members know that they were safe and out of harm’s way.

Additionally, it is interesting to note that almost 100% of our usage was through our smartphone application. When we first launched our emergency messenger service in 2009 (see video at end), most of our users were accessing it through our SMS interface, which required following instructions printed on a physical emergency card. It is quite astounding to see how quickly our mobile app has now become our most used product, and rendered what was previously our primary offering almost obsolete in just over a year’s time!

When natural disasters take place, it reminds all of us to make sure we’re prepared for the future. In addition to familiarizing yourself with technology such as Facebook, Twitter and Life360’s free family safety app for either your iPhone or Android phone, here are a few things to remember when trying to contact loved ones in the event of an emergency:

  • If your call can’t get through, wait a few minutes. The voice network is likely overloaded, if not down. Try an alternative like sending a text (SMS) message.
  • If you are able to get through, keep conversation short and limited to vital information.
  • If you think you may not be able to remember phone numbers, get an Emergency ID that has a toll-free number that you can use to contact everyone in your family.

We should help those most in need right now. To make a donation to the Red Cross, click here.

8 Responses to “Over 1,600 Families Across Japan Use Life360's Safety Check In During Earthquake”

  1. Fabrizio

    I didn't know something like this existed. Wouldnt have believed it could have worked either but i guess this is proof

  2. Soren

    Why doesn't the government offer this? It should be something everyone has. I heard of something like this years ago but nothing ever happened

  3. Sommerreifen

    I once traveled with one of my family made??. It was beautiful. We wanted to relax a little bit, because we all work very much. My mother was very happy that we finally go somewhere. My daughter has jumped into the air. It has been happy. We like it when we travel somewhere together can, because there is always something happening. This time we have seen how the men in a parking lot, car tires had to unpack on a car. Strangely, we have again made ??the move. At that moment, all passenger cars tires were everywhere. The consolidation of the trailer was a bit broken and too weak for that. All passenger car tires were thrown apart. Although the’ve all seen them, nobody helped, although that was in the center of town, where most cars drive. My husband has stopped quickly in order to help the men. It was very nice, I think. With the help of my husband, everything went faster than without him. The workers were very grateful that he helped in the collection of passenger car tires. I hope they will do anything that they go happily to the target.


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