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What are Zello and Firechat, the apps people are downloading for Hurricane Florence?

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colin_b
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What are Zello and Firechat, the apps people are downloading for Hurricane Florence?

#1 Post by colin_b » Thu Sep 13, 2018 9:15 pm

https://www.newsobserver.com/latest-new ... 48820.html
Firechat works even without an internet or cell phone connection, making it useful for close, crowded areas where signal is weak or nonexistent, like disaster shelters. The app itself says it works in an area of around 200 feet. The app uses peer-to-peer Wi-Fi and Bluetooth to keep everyone’s phones connected, and it can be downloaded from the Google Play and iPhone app store.
Could be useful.

https://play.google.com/store/apps/deta ... chat&hl=en

xali
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Re: What are Zello and Firechat, the apps people are downloading for Hurricane Florence?

#2 Post by xali » Fri Sep 14, 2018 10:32 am

thanks, colin_b. it seems very interesting

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Eadwine Rose
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Re: What are Zello and Firechat, the apps people are downloading for Hurricane Florence?

#3 Post by Eadwine Rose » Fri Sep 14, 2018 2:29 pm

Doesn't seem too reliable, given the firechat reviews
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colin_b
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Re: What are Zello and Firechat, the apps people are downloading for Hurricane Florence?

#4 Post by colin_b » Fri Sep 14, 2018 8:35 pm

Eadwine Rose wrote:
Fri Sep 14, 2018 2:29 pm
Doesn't seem too reliable, given the firechat reviews
I saw the app mentioned on a TV news broadcast and assumed it had been tested.

It's obvious I was wrong.

:bagoverhead:

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Re: What are Zello and Firechat, the apps people are downloading for Hurricane Florence?

#5 Post by catalinux » Tue Sep 25, 2018 7:42 am

I had Firechat installed for a while during the February 2017 protests in my country. Someone suggested using it because the cellphone lines in the area would get really crowded since a lot of people (hundreds of thousands to be more precise) would start calling, messaging, or even sharing stuff on social media all at once. Orange and Telekom had to bring mobile relays so that the networks would be decongested.

The idea of creating some mesh networks using people's devices as relays is quite nice and useful when stuff gets too crowded, but on the surface Firechat seems only another internet chat app. I found no way to make it establish somewhat of a mesh network or what it advertised. I found there was some sort of accesibility setting on my device (using Android 6.0) but I couldn't test it since the protests had tempered down by then and there was no risk of getting the lines congested.

You could also check The Serval Mesh project if you are interested in this (if it is still up and running)
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