back to article Zoombak Universal portable A-GPS locator

The Zoombak personal GPS locator is designed to be used for a wide range of applications, whether it’s keeping an eye on an elderly relative, a teenage driver, a bike or even your dog. Zoombak comes in three different flavours: there’s a dog locator, complete with a pouch that clips onto the dog collar; a car locator that …

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Bronze badge

PAYG

Why not just get a cheap PAYG mobile and use one of the mobile triangulation services?

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Silver badge

And? And?

> We tried using the Zoombak in various modes, including walking

> around with it in a pocket and putting it in the glove compartment of a car.

Yeah, but you don't tell us if it worked in these locations. Did it? Does this thing really pick up a GPS signal from within a glove compartment of a car? Or even from within a trouser pocket? My experience with GPS devices makes me suspect it, but maybe tech has moved on.

Answers please!

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Silver badge

Satellites

and if your bike is in someones garage no amount of checking can give you a location.

Not an anti-theft device but a 'where did I put my . . . . ?' device but no doubt partly marketed as such.

"Hey, that's odd, according to the map my car seems to be in the canal"

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Stop

A pedant writes...

I am shocked, stunned and indeed saddened to see the word "latter" being applied to a selection from three items. According to the pedant's handbook the use of former/ latter should only be applied to a selection of two.

What would 'er indoors think?

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Sounds like a cheaper SPOT..

...but without the emergency notification or check-in capabilities and a much reduced real-time tracking function (an hour per activation compared with SPOT's 24 hours). Spot details at: http://international.findmespot.com/

It may be smaller and cheaper than SPOT but it sounds generally less capable. In particular, it wouldn't be suitable for keeping tabs on a friend or family member who is hill walking, etc. and has a much shorter battery life.

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Anonymous Coward

RE: Satellites

That is true, but the device is probably reporting it's position at fixed intervals. So even though your bike may be in someones garage, and the gps couldn't get a fix, the Zoombak servers would still have a record of it's last reported position.... which is most likely just before it went into said garage.

Also the data connection is probably still active in an enclosed space, so the device itself can report it's last known position to the provider anyway.

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Thumb Down

SMS

The problem with all these devices (I have tried others), is that it relies on mobile phone technology. I'd like to keep tabs on my small child when we're camping ... usually where there is little on no mobile coverage... so it's useless.

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Bronze badge

Another pedant writes ...

Curiously, there was a similar misuse of the word 'latter' earlier today (rather than 'the latter which', 'the last of which' might have been preferable:

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/11/04/secure_hash_competition/

Given that it's unlikely that the same mistake would be made independently in two separate articles, maybe these are cryptic clues for a treasure hunt on Friday.

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Coat

Zombie locator

I haven't watched any zombie movies lately, but when I first read the title of the article, I thought: "Huh, what? A zombie locator? That's pretty cool."

Mine's the one with a decaying severed hand sticking out of the pocket.

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Happy

some answers from an owner

I have one of these and it works well.

Ralph B: I keep mine in the glovebox and yes, it does work in there as well as when I've given it to my daughter to carry in her pocket when she's gone on bike rides with her friends.

Elmer Phud: I also park my car in the garage over night and although i can't get a locate while it is in there, when i leave for work in the morning and leave the zone set up around my house, I do get the alert to say I have left the area and where my current location is at the time.

My daughter now wants to cycle to school each day (don't know why, it's bl**dy freezing!) so I am going to buy a second unit and set up a zone around her school and around home - that way i will know she has arrived at school safely and also i will know when she leaves school so I know when to expect her home. I'll also get an alert when she gets home so I know she's got back ok.

I don't pay 10 quid a month though. I chose to pay 99quid when i registered which gives me a years usage.

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