* Prices may differ from that shown
This was a great idea for a birthday present from my very thoughtful daughter this year. As she's in her late 20s now, you may gather this locator device is not intended for keeping tabs on her! It has many possible uses for keeping track of valuables: phones, keys, remotes, purses, wallets etc. But if you are considering using this with children please note the manufacturer's important caveat:
'It should not be relied upon to find people'.
For those who remain interested...
The 'Loc8tor lite' is a small handheld gadget designed to help you find lost possessions, guiding the owner audio/visually towards specially tagged mislaid items.
The compact package bears the legend 'Don't lose it, locate it!' and contains everything needed to get started:
* Credit card sized handheld locator device
* 2 mini homing tags (additional ones are extra)
* Plastic mounting bracket
* Key ring loops & adhesive strips (only the loops used)
* Tag id sticker (to keep a note of what you've tagged)
* Batteries (pre-installed)
* Small instruction booklet
~~Losing it? Don't panic!~~
So, does it work? Well, it's definitely worth a try - for certain purposes.
I had a couple of narrow escapes recently whilst out walking, carelessly dropping my house keys somewhere along the way. On arriving home to discover this each time, I took a deep breath and ... following time-honoured practice, immediately retraced my steps (some considerable distance on both occasions) and actually found them lying in long grass next to the path. But I had a strong feeling it could only be a matter of time, and a case of 'third time unlucky'!
Maybe it's just the 'umbrella principle' - if you have one it probably won't rain - but since I've had this gadget and satisfied myself that it works, I haven't actually needed it. At least not yet... Famous last words, possibly, but it definitely functions well in and around the house, garden, garage etc.
The device is claimed to be 'designed specifically for locating either at home or out and about' but it is worth bearing in mind that this 'lite' version has a limited range. (See below for details) Meanwhile, at least if I do mislay my house or car keys anywhere around the house, it should be easy to track them down.
Of course, for any of this to work at all you'll also need to remember where the unit itself is located, assuming the supplied batteries still have some life in them!
~~Instructions and use~~
The brief multilingual instruction booklet is concise and clearly written, with colour illustrations. I found this quite straightforward to follow and everything was set up in a few minutes.
The user guide is also available for downloading (URL supplied) and printing in larger text/format. Good idea!
Basically, you need to register each tag with the unit and note the relevant id (4 max, 2 supplied). Then switch on, press relevant button and follow the audiovisual clues (flashing LEDs and beeps).
The range is said to be 122 metres / 400 feet 'based on clear line of sight'. While I can't claim to have tested this scientifically, it does seem to cope well all around the house and garden, through walls, doors etc. So it should certainly work over a fair distance in the countryside too, perhaps subject to weather conditions. (Note: Splash-proof tag casings may be available)
One very minor quibble: for some reason the mounting bracket just would not adhere to the side of our freezer. The details escape me but there are plenty of alternative methods for sticking/fixing this to various surfaces, e.g. using magnets or rawlplugs.
Interestingly, as this unit provides both audio and visual clues, the manufacturer can claim it to be 'suitable for partial or no sight'.
~~Price and availability~~
Currently available from Amazon from just over £40. Twin pack of extra tags c. £25.
Can help find lost valuables; easy to set up & use; small and light; batteries included.
Not for tagging people! Only two tags included; non-GPS; range varies with conditions; not weatherproof.
My experience with this device can't possibly cover the full range of applications and conditions. In particular, it hasn't been tested far from our home, and I've only used it with inanimate objects! I'd recommend visiting the Loc8tor company's website for further information and alternatives - e.g. 'loc8tor GPS' & 'loc8tor Pet'.
A clever gadget that could well help you relocate that vital item! Just bear in mind its limitations.
* Manufacturer's website : www.loc8tor.com/uk/
Small and light, this unit is ultra-portable and easily fits into a pocket, bag or wallet.
Based on manufacturer's website:-
86mm x 54mm x 6mm
30.5mm x 19.5mm x 8.5mm
I 'did a double-take' recently when I came across a reference to this product being used to help people with dementia problems. I was relieved to discover this related to retrieving items which had been mislaid due to memory issues, not for locating the sufferers themselves. Much more appropriate solutions exist for the latter!
[© SteveS001, 2011. A version of this original review may be found on other review sites]