Little Buddy Child Tracker, Kinderguard Monitor Kids' Location
Parents who want to keep track of their children can place a small GPS device into the backpack, coat pocket, or lunch box of their son or daughter and wait for signals sent to them on their computer or smart phone. The Little Buddy Child Tracker is the newest addition to the child tracking market. A previously released tracking device, called the Kinderguard, was introduced in Great Britain several years ago.
In the United States, child abductions and missing children are of great concern. A child goes missing every 45 seconds, and in 2008, a total of 364,000 children were abducted. These frightening statistics have made the market ripe for products such as the Little Buddy Child Tracker and the Kinderguard.
According to Best Buy, which sells the Little Buddy Child Tracker, the device has customizable safety checks that allow parents to identify specific locations where their child is supposed to be and the times he or she should be there. If the child leaves the predetermined location during the designated time, the device sends alerts with a text message to the parents’ computer or smart phone. The Little Buddy Child Tracker also alerts parents as to when the battery is running low so they can ensure service is not interrupted.
Parents who would like more than time and location information about their child when he or she is away from them may want to consider the Kinderguard device. Along with GPS capabilities, the Kinderguard contains a biometric alert system that can monitor a child’s health, providing information on heart rate, respiration rate, skin temperature, stress level, and so on. This requires that the child be wearing the device. If the child removes the Kinderguard, an alarm is sent to the parent. Parents also are alerted if the child changes location unexpectedly or if there is a change in biometric information.
One feature the Little Buddy Child Tracker does not share with the Kinderguard is notification to parents if the child is separated from the device. While children are required to wear the Kinderguard, the Little Buddy Child Tracker is simply carried, which means a child or a child’s abductor can leave the device behind and parents would not be notified.
Given the reality of child abductions, it is almost certain additional and more sophisticated child tracking devices will be entering the marketplace to join the Little Buddy Child Tracker and Kinderguard. Concerned parents can be on the lookout for improvements to the current models or for new child tracking products in the near future.
Best Buy website for Little Buddy Child Tracker
Chicago Sun Times, October 27, 2009