Lincoln Police Chief Ted Smith on Tuesday displays the prototype of his department's soon–to-be released “app” for smartphones and tablet computers. The LPD app will provide users a variety of information, including emergency alerts, as well as a means of communicating with the department. (John Koziol)
Lincoln police to roll out new smartphone app
LINCOLN — Police are getting ready to roll out an app that will provide smartphone and tablet users information about the town, access to alerts and safety advice and a means of providing tips about crimes.
On Monday, Cloudspace Mobile, which has developed similar apps for departments in Santa Ana and Sacramento, Calif., delivered a prototype of the app to Chief Ted Smith, who said it would be available to the public after some fine-tuning.
Smith said his department and Cloudspace Mobile have been working on the app since last November. The company is donating its services, which are valued at $15,000, because the Lincoln Police Department has been a partner in developing it.
A complement to the department’s website and Facebook page, the new app will offer useful information about Lincoln, which has about 1,200 year-round residents and every day has between 30,000 and 50,000 people who visit or pass through it, said Smith.
App users will be able to provide tips anonymously or openly to police, said Smith, and the app can also store serial numbers of personal belongings, which would be useful information should they ever be stolen. It will also have a full calendar of events in Lincoln and tips on bike, gun, weather and Internet safety.
Emergency information, such as road closures will be sent as text alerts. Users will be able to comment on how they were treated by police officers.
Smith said his department will not store information about users.
“We’ve reduced a lot of steps to get to the police department,” Smith said, adding the app is the latest and best way to reach the public.
“We designed our app to be useful to our client base — residents, tourists and part-time people — so anyone visiting Lincoln will get something out of it,” said Smith.
While larger police departments out west are using similar apps, Smith said Lincoln may be the first in New Hampshire to offer one.