FreshTeam’s big idea is to eliminate what it calls « low value messaging, » the sort of chats that could easily be automated away forever. For instance, if a boss wants to know where you are, they can spot your GPS location without having to ask. It can even detect when you’re behind the wheel thanks to your phone’s sensors, and thus redirect incoming calls so you’ll keep your eyes on the road. Naturally, all of this info can be shut off when you’re not at work, but it could be a useful way of dealing with a company with a lot of remote employees. The app is free on both Android and iOS, and includes both voice and video chats of up to 100 people.
As tracking technology gets cheaper and more sophisticated, it’s likely that more companies will look into adopting something like this for their mobile workers. It’s also likely that this will become a new battleground for employee rights, since people may resist the idea of being tracked. Earlier this year, a British newspaper put motion trackers on the desks of every staff member, ostensibly to monitor their energy usage. Workers felt that this was a violation of their privacy, and protested, leading to the devices being withdrawn in less than a day. Although, in FreshTeam’s case, we imagine that you’ll be aware of the system before you sign your employment contract.