Reviewed by: Mojomums Sally and daughter Evie (age 11)
What they say: WatchuGPS is a new GPS smartwatch designed for children aged 5-11 years and has been launched to help tackle the issue of child safety. WatchuGPS is the only watch of its kind that links up to a parent or caregiver’s mobile phone allowing them to instantly see where the child is.
The watch provides the complete package for parents who are keen to ensure the safety and security of their children while they learn to be out in public without direct adult supervision. As well as giving children confidence, the watch and its accompanying App allows parents to be in contact with their child at the touch of a button and enables them to set agreed parameters and controls.
WatchuGPS is full of unique and useful features including:
- Geo-Zones which alert parents as and when their child enters or leaves them
- Comprehensive tracking capabilities that use GPS, LBS, Wi-Fi & Mobile-ID location to provide precise up to the minute tracking updates
- Remote Voice Monitoring allowing parents to listen to the environment around the device
- Voice messaging allowing parents to send 15 second recordings to their children
- Phone calls to the watch so a parent can speak to their child directly
The watch also has some features for children designed to make them feel secure when out and about. These include an SOS button on the watch that immediately updates the watch location, messages the pre-set phone contacts and then starts dialling until someone the list answers. The watch also has an in-built pedometer and a bright LCD screen which can show digital and clock-face displays.
What we say: “I was keen for my daughter to use this watch, she is at the age where she is starting to venture out alone with her friends and I was intrigued to learn more about this watch…
We were sent the blue one to try; not her first choice of colour but it was bright and she was more than happy to wear it out (tick number one!). The strap is soft and anti-allergy, although my daughter has complained that it rubs slightly, this hasn’t put her off wearing it.
The watch comes with a sim card, a preloaded £3 credit and a new phone number. You charge via a supplied USB and we have found the charge holds well for a couple of days (when being used as a watch, as expected a little less when used as a phone).
The instructions for use were fairly easy and we were keen to try out the key features, but first you (the parent) need to download an App onto your own phone, to track and control the watch/phone.
The App is easy to use and within it you can listen in to the activity in the WATCHU’s environment, set who your child can call (and who can call them), view call histories and even set up Geo Zones (you will be alerted if your child ventures outside a set geographical zone). So many great features and I am sure there are more that we haven’t found yet!
Onto the watch itself… the ring is loud and clear (slightly too loud for my daughter, who told me off when I called her on it when she was in a shop!). The location alert appears to be very accurate, detailing road names and clearly marking your child with a pin. It is extremely easy to make and receive phone calls, even my younger children were able to get the hang of this with ease (ahh, the technological mind of a five year old!). A built in pedometer tracks daily steps. The SOS button is simple to use (maybe too simple, causing panicked parents worries), but my daughter understands when this can be used (for younger children, I would take time to make sure you explain this clearly).
All in all, a great gadget and cool looking watch. My apprehensions about being able to ‘spy’ on my daughter have passed; if I trust her enough to wear the watch and head out alone with her friends, then she needs to trust me that I won’t listen in on her and track her moves non-stop. But for that ‘just in case’ scenario, that 1 in a million chance that you may lose your child in a crowded place…well, this watch then becomes your lifeline.”
WatchuGPS watches are available directly from www.watchugps.com and cost £119.99. Customers can take advantage of an interest-free ‘easy payment’ option of two payments of £59.99 to spread the cost over time.