What is a beacon going to do if you dont know how to use it? Or when in panic you forget, miss or screw up a step? i wouldn't play in BC before i get some avalanche training. Just because there is a gate to it doesn't mean its safe.
It's more important your buddy knows how it works than you (assuming it is you that is in trouble). At the top of Wawa lift at Sunshine is a test place, so you can practice.