Robbie Stone and Betsy Huigens
Bluelight creator Betsy Huigens had an idea the summer before she was to go away for college. “My parents, like all parents, were worried about where I would be when I was out and if I was safe,” said Huigens. “That gave me an idea of developing a website around the idea of keeping people safe.”
Betsy was young and not yet done with High School, so she shelved the idea, graduated and started school at DePaul University a year later. “I met Nick Rosa from Sandbox Indusries at the Coleman Entrepreneurship Center at DePaul,” said Huigens, “and it eventually led to me being brought on Sandbox and developing what became Bluelight.”
Betsy is joined in developing Bluelight by Robbie Stone, also of Sandbox. “I’m an MBA candidate at Booth,” said Robbie, “ and came to Sandbox because of my experience doing project management for a startup in Ohio I worked at after getting my undergraduate degree. “
The Bluelight App is available for iPhone and its tagline (from the website) is, “Just think of it as I’ll call you when I get there 2.0”.
The way it works is simple- users set an alert for any period of time whether it be a half hour or several hours. “If I was going on a date with a new guy,” said Huigens, “I could set an alert for three hours so my roommate would know I was okay. If I don’t cancel the alert and/or let my friend now that I am safe at the alert time, Bluelight sends an alert to my friend so they can reach out to see if I’m okay.”
Bluelight also has a button that can send an alert automatically should the user find themselves in a situation where they want to alert their contact. “It really is just a way to let your designated contact know you’re okay,” said Huigens.
In the picture of the iPhone, you can see the countdown of how much time is left until the alert is sent. Bluelight runs in the background so the user doesn’t have to have it on screen while it runs.
“Creating Bluelight has been a great experience for us both,” said Robbie Stone, “and now we are focused on getting the word out and getting feedback from users.”
Stone also said Bluelight is free in the itunes app store.
From the Bluelight website:
1. Input Your Travel Time
Set Bluelight for the length of time you need to arrive at your destination. If you’re walking home from school and you know it will take 20 minutes, set Bluelight for 20 minutes.
2. Select a Contact
Select a friend you trust from your address book to be your Bluelight contact. For example, choose your sister, Betsy. Set a custom message if you want.
3. Set Alert
Hit “Set Alert” and head towards home.
4. Stay Safe
Arrive safely at your apartment and press “Cancel” in Bluelight. If you don’t hit “Cancel” before the timer expires, Betsy will receive an alert from Bluelight letting her know to get in touch with you to make sure you’re okay.