Proving the Business Case for the Internet of Things

Smartwatch tracks children and monitors health

Steve Rogerson
July 26, 2016



Two UK firms have launched a smartwatch and range of applications for children designed not only to track and locate a child’s whereabouts but also to monitor their behaviour remotely and encourage a healthy lifestyle.
 
The device is a result of a collaboration between Podsystem M2M, which supplies multi-network data SIM cards for the M2M and IoT industries, and wearable IoT technology firm MyFamily Mobile.
 
“MyFamily Mobile child smartwatches are for children aged between four and 12,” said Seyi Opanubi, co-founder and director of operations and R&D at MyFamily Mobile.
 
The smartwatch – otherwise known as PCam, for personal communications access module – features a location system based on GPS, GSM, wifi and G sensor enabling parents to locate their child in real time at the touch of a button. Parents can trigger an alarm to find their child if they become separated and children can also make an SoS emergency call to parents if they are in danger.
 
It is also possible to see a historical map of the child’s location over time.
 
A safe zone can be set up around areas such as school or home and an alert triggered when the child leaves this area. In addition to these security features, the child can call and send instant messages to a list of contacts, which are controlled via a parenting app available for download from the MyFamily App store.
 
The app allows parents to monitor and control a whole range of features remotely on the device. For example, a calendar can be set up to remind the child about daily activities such as brushing their teeth, doing their homework and so on. Via the app, it is also possible to analyse the child’s behaviour patterns and to listen remotely to the child without triggering the smartwatch, which provides added peace of mind if the child does not answer a call.
 
The device is built around Podsystem M2M’s resilient data connectivity system, designed for mission critical applications such as those focused on safety and security. The global coverage and connection to multiple mobile networks in each country, in addition to the use of separate back-up networks designed to avoid loss of connectivity even when technical issues on the core network infrastructure occur, are the keys to the success of this wearable device.
 
“One of the most important aspects of the IoT is the way it can be used to improve peoples’ safety and security,” said Charles Towers-Clark, managing director of Podsystem Group. “We have designed our IoT connectivity with added resilience to give people the peace of mind to know that they can rely on mission critical applications, such as that provided by MyFamily Mobile, when they most need them.”
 
Additional applications for the device are available via the MyFamily Children App and Book Store and the MyFamily Educational App Store, through which parents can update a whole variety of games, books and educational material based on the British curriculum. Regularly updated games are available including those that encourage physical exercise.
 
The device is also compatible with next generation smart toys, such as robotic balls that can be controlled with the child’s movement. Children can interact with friends via the watch, which allows them to add friends that are close by to their contact list via Bluetooth, generating a notification to the parent app.
 
“Parents refresh their PCams regularly with new interactive books, apps and games from the parent app shop and monitor the child’s health and activity level,” said Opanubi. “Reminders are regularly sent to the PCams’ calendar from the parent app. As well as informing parents once children are home, at school, with friends or, if in danger, parents can call or send messages to children through the PCam.”