Keeping kids safe

Cambridge Positioning Systems and Xion are developing a new wristwatch-based child safety communicator and locator – the first of its kind to deliver high accuracy location in all environments including indoors.

CPS (Cambridge Positioning Systems Ltd) and Xion are developing a new wristwatch-based child safety communicator and locator – the first of its kind to deliver high accuracy location in all environments including indoors.

Xion, a personal communications and security solutions provider, will integrate CPS’ Matrix location software into its Sentinel Watch, a GSM-based device that allows parents to securely track, locate and communicate with their children in an event of an emergency or on an ongoing basis.

Until now, most location devices have been underpinned by Cell-ID technology that is limited to locating individuals within a mobile network cell. In urban areas, where cell sites are concentrated, location accuracy is around 500 meters. However, in suburban areas, where mobile cells are much larger, location accuracy is adversely affected and can be anything up to 10km, delivering unpredictable and disappointing results for end users. Likewise, devices using satellite-based technology struggle to perform effectively and accurately indoors and in dense urban areas and are currently priced well beyond the means of most parents.

The new Sentinel Watch will be based on a tri-band GSM engine and be able to consistently deliver 100m accuracy in urban, suburban and rural areas. In addition it will be able to track and locate the watch indoors and in metal framed buildings.

The watch will also offer parent/child communication via SMS/MMS, a warning for parents if the child moves outside a designated or defined area, a panic button which sends an immediate alert message to the parent, a security clasp and security strap the alert the parent when the watch is removed without authorisation as well as gaming facilities.

The Sentinel watch is scheduled for launch in early 2005 and will have a recommended retail price of £69.00.