Zello's creators, however, say that is not the case. Protests in Venezuela were also aided thanks to the app.
People are using it to talk to each other during Hurricane Irma, which is now heading away from Puerto Rico towards the Dominican Republic and Haiti. It's a walkie-talkie style app that works in places with WiFi or cell phone service.
Moore stressed that hearing a voice is much different than receiving a text message because you can sense fear or other emotions.
However, if there's absolutely no Wi-Fi or cellular service, Zello won't work. While you may want to have a solar charger in your bug out bag (preferably a water proof Pelican case), you may also want to carry a power brick, a vehicle lighter USB charger and some 9V batteries. You will need an internet connection of some kind. If your phone has low battery, Zello recommends turning off the app and enabling push notifications when it is not in use.
Florida Gov. Rick Scott recommended the app to drivers scrambling to find a station with gas.
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"We estimate that GasBuddy has been downloaded approximately half a million times since Hurricane Harvey made landfall on August 25", Oliver Yeh, CEO of Sensor Tower, an app intelligence firm, told Mashable. "That is an increase of about 420% over the preceding 14 day period".
They can hear other people's transmissions and contribute, as well. Let's be honest - a lot of TV-station-based hurricane tracker apps feel like they are trying to scare you rather than inform you.
You can also tap on Channels, Add a Channel and then search or look at trending channels to join one for a topic that interests you. This can be done by clicking the three lines in the upper left corner, choosing "offline maps" and then signing in to your Google account.
Contact 13 used the app to reach people in the path of the storm.