The best GPS trackers for kids provide parents peace of mind by allowing their children to roam freely. A reliable GPS tracker can tell you precisely where your child is, whether they’re walking to and from school, playing in a nearby park, or getting lost in a throng on a family excursion.
It’s as simple as clipping a tracker to their bag or strapping it to their wrist to give your kids a tracker. A great GPS tracker should be simple to use regardless of design, with some gadgets capable of sending out notifications to you and other caretakers if there is a problem.
We examine how easy a gadget is to use, how comfortable it is to wear, and — perhaps most crucially — what sort of information it delivers parents when looking for the finest GPS trackers. We also consider the continuous costs of child trackers; in addition to the initial cost, network access is frequently charged on a monthly basis.
While we focused our study on the best GPS trackers and devices for kids, several of these gadgets may also be used to keep an eye on elderly parents. In our search for the best tracking tools, we came across the following. Also, you can see how to factory reset of Windows 11
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What are the best GPS trackers and devices for kids?
Thanks to a kid-proof design that can endure the weather, Jiobit has been the best GPS tracker for kids, albeit the firm has begun collecting orders for a new version. The original Jiobit integrated smoothly with your or a caregiver’s smartphone, allowing you to track not only your child’s whereabouts but also who they’re with – a useful tool if you rely on a nanny or babysitter and want to check in on how they’re doing.
If you prefer a watch over a clip-on tracker, Lil Tracker is both comfy and inexpensive, though the software is a bit complicated. The Apple Watch SE is an intriguing choice for tracking the whereabouts of someone wearing an LTE-enabled variant of the wristwatch, while not being a typical kid tracker. Apple’s Family Setup function allows you to follow the position of someone wearing an LTE-enabled model of the smartwatch. However, given the Apple Watch’s price, we’d only suggest it to older children or parents.
You might be tempted to try anything else, like a regular GPS tracker, instead of one built exclusively for kids, but we advise against it. The best GPS trackers for kids are built particularly for children to wear and operate. Dedicated GPS trackers, such as the very precise Spot Gen3, might be difficult for children to operate.
We’d also advise against utilizing Apple’s new AirTag for anything other than tracking items. Although the tracker’s usage of Ultra-Wideband makes it appealing for use with kids and pets, the range isn’t as excellent as a specialized people tracker, and Apple discourages such use.
The Best GPS Trackers for Kids in 2022
1. Jiobit Tracker
Monthly service cost: $9/month with a two-year commitment, $13/month without contact | Battery life: Up to one week | Connectivity: Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, Cellular, GPS
- Bluetooth link to the caregiver’s phone, allowing you to see who your child is with
- The design is shockproof and waterproof
- The device lacks an SOS button
- The app lacks useful functionality
The Jiobit, which is compact and light, is our recommendation for the best GPS tracker for keeping track of kids, pets, and elderly individuals. The tracker has a loop that allows it to be attached to a backpack, shoe, belt loop, keychain, or necklace, and we only had to charge it once every five days or so.
Because of a new antenna design, Jiobit’s creators have released a new version, the $129 Jiobit Next, which claims greater battery life and more precise tracking. Jiobit Next should function better in places with poor cellular coverage thanks to supporting low-power wide-area networks. We intend to put the gadget to the test.
With no screen, microphone, or speaker, the original Jiobit seems quite sturdy. It’s shock-resistant and waterproof, with an IPX8 certification, so I doubt my 6-year-old would be able to break it without putting in a lot of effort. We threw it on the ground, walked on it, and left it on the driveway during a rainstorm, and it continued to function normally.
2. Apple AirTag
Price: $29.99 or 4 for $99.99 | Battery life: 1 year | Real-time tracking: No | Monthly cost: None | Connectivity: Bluetooth, Apple’s Find My Network
- Reliable and accurate
- Directional indications are provided.
- It is possible to communicate a position from a distance, and the battery may be replaced.
- There is no Android support.
- There is no method to call a phone from the tag.
- There isn’t a hole for a lanyard or keychain.
- The number of anti-stalking features is minimal.
Apple’s AirTags are about the size of a quarter, and there are a variety of attachments available to attach the little tracker to a jacket, backpack, or even a jeans pocket. There is no monthly subscription, and the CR2032 battery will last for about a year before needing to be replaced.
Apple has made it plain that AirTags is not intended to track pets or children, but it’s reasonable to wonder how well an AirTag will keep track of your child. In general, an AirTag performs admirably. The issue originates from the fact that in order for an AirTag’s position to be communicated with Apple’s Find My network, another Apple device must be nearby and connected to the internet.
For example, following a small child on the school bus would necessitate someone on the bus having an iPhone or cellular Apple Watch, most likely another student or the bus driver. The location will not be updated if there are no Apple devices aboard the bus.
Another possible disadvantage of AirTags is that they can only be tracked using an Apple device. That means you’ll need an iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch to get started, and then you’ll be able to track its whereabouts using a Mac. AirTags will not work if you or your companion use a Windows or Android smartphone.
An AirTag is best for tracking a misplaced bag, keys, or another random object that you can be patient with. The AirTag is, without a doubt, the best tracker available for those purposes. There are, however, better options for tracking a kid.
3. Invoxia Cellular GPS Tracker
Price: $129 | Battery life: 4 months | Real-time tracking: No | Monthly cost: $39.90/year after first year | Connectivity: Bluetooth, GPS, LTE
- Setup is quick and simple
- Long battery life
- It is simple to design bespoke geofencing zones
- Notification of an emergency
- IFTTT supports a wide range of custom alert kinds
- Waterproofing is not possible
- There is no method to verify subscription status within the app
- Zone notifications arrive with a delay or not at all
- Certain settings must be changed when the phone is nearby
The Cellular GPS Tracker by Invovia looks more like a lengthy USB drive than a tracking device. The blank casing has all of the necessary electronics for LTE and GPS connection, as well as a four-month battery. Because battery life is dependent on how frequently the tracker reports its location, I say “can last.”
You can pick between every 5 minutes, 10 minutes, or 30 minutes for battery life of 2 weeks, 3 weeks, and 7 weeks, respectively. There’s also an energy-saving mode that should get you closer to the 4-month estimate.
For $129 you get the device and a year’s worth of service. After the first year, you’ll pay $39.90 for another year’s worth of service.
Using the Android or iPhone app, you can create alerts that are triggered whenever the tracker enters or leaves a specific area. For example, you can create an alert that lets you know when your child has arrived at school or got home. However, the timeliness of those alerts will depend on how often you have the tracker reporting its location.
There’s also a button on the tracker that a child can press to send their current location.
If you don’t mind charging the device via a microUSB connection every couple of weeks, and the 5-minute alert interval is acceptable to you, then the Invoxia Cellular GPS Tracker might make sense. However, due to its size, it’s going to be better suited for being kept in a backpack.
4. Prime Tracking SafeTrack
Price: $29.99 | Battery life: 2 weeks | Real time tracking: Yes | Monthly cost: $17 month | Connectivity: GPS, Cellular |
- Everything is straightforward to use, set up, and monitor from any computer.
- You are not required to adhere to the schedule and may cancel at any moment.
- Children, the elderly, automobiles, spouses, and other persons may all be properly tracked.
- Geofencing has strong support.
- Google Maps allows for real-time tracking from any smartphone.
- Locations are usually two blocks away or more.
- According to the majority of consumers, the battery lasts around a week.
- The technology does not track your whereabouts in real time, but rather every 10 seconds.
- It takes a long time to charge.
The Prime Tracking SafeTrack is a real-time tracking gadget that costs $30. In terms of physical size, it’s one of the largest gadgets we’ve evaluated. It’s about as big as two tic-tac boxes piled on top of each other. On the front of the gadget, there are a series of LEDs and a button. A USB-C connector on the side is used to charge the battery, which should last two weeks with normal use.
You may create numerous geofences and receive notifications when the tracker leaves or arrives at each one. In fact, the SafeTrack website, which you use to alter settings and check the tracker’s position, has a long list of notification triggers, and it reminds me more of a program that a business customer would use to follow a fleet of vehicles or staff, rather than a child.
Prime Tracking does sell a converter that connects to a car’s OBD2 port.
To utilize the tracker, you must pay a monthly subscription charge for the essential service. This can cost anything from $25 per month if paid on a month-to-month basis to $17 per month if paid in advance for a year. A $20 per month option with a 6-month commitment is in the middle.
I can envision placing the SafeTrack in baggage or hiding it in your car to help monitor it if it’s ever stolen, but because of its size and monthly cost, I wouldn’t advocate using it to follow a child.
5. Apple Watch SE
Monthly service cost: Varies by wireless carrier | Weight: 30.5 grams (1.1 ounces) to 36.3 grams (1.3 ounces) | Battery life: 18 hours | Call/text support: Yes | App support: iOS | Network: LTE, UTMS, Wi-Fi (802.11b/g/n 2.4GHz), Bluetooth 5.0
- Smartwatches have additional features.
- Emergency SOS phoning with Apple’s Family Setup
- More pricey than the majority of child trackers
- The battery life is average.
Apple continues to upgrade its Apple Watch collection, with the Apple Watch 7 being the most recent model. However, parents of older children who want a gadget that keeps everyone linked should consider the Apple Watch SE, even if Apple’s lower-cost choice hasn’t been updated in a while.
Because Apple’s Family Setup function allows you to administer an Apple Watch for someone else — for instance, a youngster or an older parent. And, rather than being overkill, you can monitor locations from afar with a less expensive choice like the Apple Watch SE.
The Apple Watch SE comes in two sizes, 40mm and 44mm, and has an aluminum casing with silver, gold, and space grey finishes. The Apple Watch SE contains an accelerometer, gyroscope, and always-on altimeter, the same as the Apple Watch Series 6. Fall detection, noise monitoring, international emergency calling, and emergency SOS are all included, unlike the much cheaper Apple Watch 3. Parents who are concerned about the Apple Watch SE being used as a tracking device may appreciate this function.
You’ll need the LTE version of the Apple Watch to acquire location tracking capabilities, which costs $329 for the 40mm model and $359 for the 44mm variant. You can track the position of someone wearing an LTE-connected Apple Watch SE with Family Setup activated. You may also use Family Setup to create fitness goals, send allowance money, and restrict functions during school hours.
In terms of battery life, the Apple Watch SE falls short of other dedicated GPS trackers for kids, with Apple promising only 18 hours of use. That implies the Apple Watch SE will need to be charged every night. The Apple Watch, on the other hand, has more functions than the average child tracker, such as activity monitoring, a dedicated Fitness app, and a piece of hand-washing advice.
The Apple Watch SE isn’t the best option for those looking for basic tracking capabilities. The Apple Watch SE, on the other hand, is a wonderful combination of design and usefulness for older kids who balk at some of the less sophisticated aesthetics of specialized trackers or for older parents who need to be monitored.
Just keep in mind that a new Apple Watch SE is reported to be in the works for 2022. However, the Apple Watch SE 2 isn’t expected to be released until autumn.
How to choose the best GPS tracker for kids
Here are the factors we evaluate while selecting the best GPS tracker for kids.
Features: Many GPS devices provide a variety of capabilities in addition to monitoring position, such as one- and two-way calling and the option to set up geofenced zones that warn you when your child leaves a specific region. We examine whether devices went above and beyond the fundamentals in terms of features and how those features were implemented.
Performance: When a person is on the go, you want a GPS tracker that precisely displays their location and provides regular updates. We kept track of how well each device located our exact location. When we tested trackers in congested downtown regions, we discovered that they operate better in wide-open spaces, with less precise signals.
Design: We assessed the GPS tracker’s size and whether it would be easy for a toddler to carry about. We also looked at the device’s toughness: could it endure a trip to the playground?
Simple to Use: We wanted to find devices that were simple enough for a little child to operate, but also didn’t give mom or dad too much trouble throughout the setup and activation procedure. Here’s a piece of advice that applies to everyone: Make sure to turn on your GPS tracker in as much open area as possible, rather than within a structure. Trackers despise being confined, especially at first.
Price: There are monthly subscription costs in addition to the upfront cost of a GPS tracker. We looked at how much each GPS tracker costs on a monthly basis and whether or not you had to sign a service contract. We also take note of GPS trackers that incorporate the cost of service in the initial pricing, such as by providing a free first year of service.
Security: Examine the security methods used by your GPS tracker. Also, make sure to change any default passwords or user names when setting up the device.
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