GPS Personal Locator Device (PLD), for ASD and Alzheimer’s patients

by Staff Reporter | April 1st, 2013

Frequent loss of bearings and the huge responsibility facing caregivers of autistic people to keep track of their charges at all times, prompted CEO of Global Positioning System (GPS) Tony Fama, who is also a father of a son with ASD, to develop a wristwatch solution which provides 24/7 global cellular communications and Global Positioning System (GPS) tracking.

A remote listening feature allows caretakers to detect when immediate help is required, and the wearer has access to an SOS button in case of emergencies

Called the TRiLOC GPS Personal Locator, the device was developed, after two years of research and reportedly many discussions with care-giving associations and parents of children with ASD.

“TRiLOC gives my son greater autonomy and reduces the need of constant supervision. With the tethering accessory, families or caregivers can plan trips to museums, shopping centers, and even busy theme parks without the enormous stress of the individual wandering off”, Fama said.

The TRiLOC device helps caregivers locate and safeguard people with special needs while minimising the need for constant physical supervision.

The wristwatch encompasses machine-to-machine technology from Gemalto to power a GPS Personal Locator Device (PLD), which is used to track and locate those with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.

Gemalto’s solution reportedly transmits an individual’s precise location to their caretaker’s cell phone or computer while enabling hands-free two-way voice calling when needed. A remote listening feature allows caretakers to detect when immediate help is required, and the wearer has access to an SOS button in case of emergencies.

An optional accessory worn by caregivers enables proximity detection and electronic tethering sending immediate text messages and audio alarms if an individual strays too far. In addition, an alert can be sent when the device’s lockable strap is tampered with.

“It is really rewarding to see our technology truly changing the lives of people with special needs, in this case those who are prone to getting lost,” said Jure Gantar, Middle East manager for the Machine-to-Machine division at Gemalto. “As a result of our miniaturisation efforts we have produced our slimmest module to date. With this solution, we can help improve the security and convenience of citizens by leveraging the full potential of the wireless and digital worlds around us”.

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