Connected devices play a strong role for tracking in today’s world, helping to keep tabs on loved ones both young and old. In critical situations the technology can come in handy, helping people know exactly when and where an incident occurred, but in other cases it can provide something perhaps just as valuable: peace of mind.
As millions of children set out this afternoon to begin the annual Halloween tradition of ‘trick or treat,’ concern will begin to set in for parents, who worry about the whereabouts of their little ghosts, goblins, and princesses as they trek through the neighborhood.
These days, companies are playing up to that concern and providing connected solutions in the form of tracking apps and solutions for parents to consider. One of the latest examples comes from a company called Snap MyLife Inc., providing Snap Secure, www.mysnapsecure.com. Designed as an Android-based app, the company is promoting some of its latest features in the area of “geo-fencing” for setting up trick-or-treat boundaries.
Such capabilities allow parents to establish virtual geographic location boundaries to define where their children should be and then receive an instant email alert in the event the child moves beyond that zone. Also useful is the fact parents can set up geofence time parameters and receive an alert if their child does not arrive within a specified location within a certain time period.
While such features aren’t new or unique to the event of “trick or treat” what this does mean is that on Halloween a parent will know which houses their child has stopped at and at what times.
It’s simply another example of how connected devices are helping play a role in our everyday lives. Apps such as these, along with countless others available on the Windows, iOS, and Android platforms, provide a strong level of peace of mind for those tasked with monitoring their loved ones.
In fact, a term called the “sandwich generation” is beginning to take hold in some circles, referring to people who are tasked with caring for loved ones both young and old—in essence being “sandwiched” between the two groups.
In all, the applications fall under the broader location-based services category, which analyst firm ABI Research, www.abiresearch.com, believes is on course to break the $4 billion mark this year. While ABI points to such areas as health and fitness as those leading the way, there is no doubt personal tracking devices are making a significant mark on this segment.
In fact, Berg Insight, www.berginsight.com, recently singled out the area of family locator services, saying the number of active uses of these technologies across Europe and North America will hit 70 million by 2016, representing a 34% compound annual rate to the 16 million users in 2011.
While holidays like Halloween present a fun way to bring light to the topic of family locator services, the truth of the matter is this segment of technology continues to grow broadly across the board. In any case, the holiday “consumerizes” location services to a broader audience.