It seems like South by Southwest (SXSW) was just yesterday. In reality, it was back in March. I had just been notified that I was part of the Blog Ambassadorship with Life360 days before I arrived in Austin. What I didn’t expect to see where three brand new electric BMW i3 cars rolling around with the Life360 logo on them. Life360 partnered up with BMW to bring a safe ride experience to a select few of the VIPs and Executives roaming around the tech portion of the conference. Luckily, my friend Robert Scoble who is the Startup Liaison Officer for Rackspace, was one of the chosen few for the cars.
By hooking up your smartphone to the car’s interface screen, the Life360 app popped up on the large screen. We were able to see where all of our friends were and it made it easier on the driver to map out a course to pick everyone up. The i3 looks small from the outside, but it is oh so roomy on the inside. We were able at times to get five people in this car!
We made a few Circles within the app while at SXSW. One was just used by Robert Scoble and the rest of the Life360 team to schedule rides and manage everyone. Then there was a Circle of our friends so we could see what venue everyone was at. There were quite a few messages going back and forth about the cool things we saw on the streets (it was SXSW after all!) or where we might be enjoying some grub and a cold craft brew.
A few times I lost my friends in the massive conference center and I would pop open the app and I navigate myself right to them. It was awesome!! I am a talker so there were many times when the guys would continue on to our destination and I would use the app to catch up. Life360 saved me from having to play the phone game of – Where are you? Where is that? What is that by?
On the way to an after party, I jumped into a cab with my friends as the Life360 cars were busy. Everything was great until I realized that my phone had slipped out of my pocket. I logged into the Life360 console online and watched as my phone took a ride all over Austin! That GPS tracking feature is no joke! The cab company refused to give it back even though I could tell them the exact address of where it was. All weekend I watched my phone have some serious SXSW fun until the battery died. Bye bye my little phone friend, you were missed.
I hope Life360 partners up with other conferences not only for this unique way to transport guests, because it makes staying connected to your friends and colleagues so much easier. For me, SXSW was saved by Life360 and I couldn’t possibly fathom going to another conference without this app. Oh, and those cars – they picked us up in the middle of the night on more than one occasion. Lifesavers, really!