by CIO Staff

Sprint Launches GPS-Based Child-Locator Service

Apr 13, 20062 mins
MobileSmall and Medium Business

On Thursday, Sprint Nextel will launch a new GPS-based service that allows parents to track their children via cell phones or other mobile devices, making the company the first wireless provider in the United States to offer its own child-location service, the Associated Press reports via the New York Post.

The Family Locator Service uses GPS technology to enable parents to keep tabs on up to four cell phones using the Web or their own phone or mobile device, the AP reports. Parents can even use the service to pinpoint a child’s location at a given time on a digital map, according to the AP.

The service also allows parents or guardians to set alerts that are sounded if children are not where they are supposed to be a certain time, and a text message is sent to the children’s phone whenever a parent searches for and locates them, the AP reports.

WaveMarket offers the software for $9.99 a month, and it can be downloaded to 17 different phones, the AP reports. It can locate nearly 30 GPS-enabled products, according to the AP.

Sprint representatives were quick to dismiss the privacy issues associated with the new service, the AP reports.

“It’s not about tracking. It’s not about monitoring,” Dan Gilmartin, Sprint’s marketing manager for location-based services, told the AP. “It’s about giving parents and caregivers peace of mind that they’re able to find their children’s location.”

Gilmartin noted that the Family Locator Service could be employed to keep tabs on elderly people as well, according to the AP.

Child-location products are already offered by companies like Wherify and Teen Arrive Alive, and CATS Communication last week said it plans to debut a service that alerts parents when their child nears the residence of a registered sex offender, the AP reports.

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