Do you know where your children are? How about the wife? Anyone who’s jealous, a micromanager, or has sired wayward youths will love the GPS Snitch. But even for the slightly sneaky, this surreptitious stalker is pretty freaking cool.
Armed with GPS, and a GSM radio, the Snitch acts as a stowaway spy, broadcasting its location on demand. Place it in your vehicle or a large pocket of an incredibly unobservant subject, and track away through the online applet. You can schedule times for the Snitch to report on its location, or you can track it on the fly. If you arm it, an integrated motion sensor tattles via email or text message when it detects movement, perfect for when Cameron and that Bueller kid are off joyriding in your 1961 Ferrari 250GT*. You can even load the waypoints into Google Earth to brag about your latest mountain biking excursion or use as a visual aid to your lecture about borrowing the car.
The Snitch’s battery can keep the thing alive for a few days of occasional use, or you can get a car charger or kit to tap into the car’s electrical system – good for the sneakier types. The device’s GPS and GSM signals are hearty: The Snitch can easily get a GPS signal and send alerts from within a trunk or from under a 12-Pack of soda (but not from inside a metal bar shaker, which would be a stupid hiding place anyway). If hidden, you can control it by text message.
On the not-so-great side, the unit ships without a manual; just a getting-started guide. Using it is somewhat intuitive, but it’s hard to intuit the Snitch’s full capabilities, and the web site is a little obtuse. The costs add up too: You must pay for activation ($169 per year!) and “tracking credits” that are depleted as you communicate with the device or track its location. Plus, if you don’t use your credits, they expire.
While the makers bill the Snitch as a security device and a great way to let others know your whereabouts, the opportunities for abuse are obvious. Granted, bosses and parents have every right to track their employees or spawn, but it makes them douches if they do. And if Cameron’s dad had one of these, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off would’ve sucked.