Sales of personal GPS trackers have surged in the past 12 months as wearable gadgets becoming more affordable and commonplace in day-to-day life. One of the biggest emerging trends in the wearable space is using this satellite technology to keep elderly loved ones and people living with dementia safe.
Small and discreet – personal trackers can give carers and family members piece of mind by sharing information about a user’s whereabouts and alerting them of their location if they become lost or confused.
Shaun Carse, Managing Director of Trackershop explains the rise in this cutting-edge technology, “Last year, the global GPS tracker market was worth £1.2 billion and it is expected to reach £3.5 billion by 2028. It is the past 12-18 months which have really driven the conditions for this tech to go mainstream – altering our perceptions of trackers as a device that is used to protect supercars and commercial vehicles, to something that can play a vital role protecting our loved ones.
“The uplift in demand for personal GPS trackers (we have seen sales increase 50% year-on-year), is due to a number of factors. First of all, the technology itself – affordability and better battery life mean that trackers can be used in lots of different settings more easily.
“We’re also a lot more familiar with tracking technology now – thousands of people are using wearable tech such as fitness trackers or enjoying the benefits of Find My Phone features to locate smart devices, so using location services to better protect people and possessions is much more ‘the norm’.
“Most significantly though was the impact the pandemic and lockdowns had on our personal connections. Families with older, and sometimes vulnerable members, were unable to provide the support and care that they had previously. This left leaving people living with illnesses such as dementia and Alzheimer’s more cut off from care providers than ever before.
“Dementia trackers have become widely sought after as a means to provide added peace of mind for family members and carers of vulnerable people. Small and discreet, trackers can be magnetically pinned to clothing or carried in pockets, bags, on belt loop or as a keyring.
“Using the latest advanced mapping technology, dementia trackers allow for real-time tracking of vulnerable people which can be monitored from a phone or any computer at all times. A full journey history is also automatically recorded and available for access at any time, whilst multiple safety and security zone alerts can also be set up with instant notifications when activated.
“It is not only elderly and vulnerable loved ones that GPS technology can be used to safeguard. Wearable devices can be given to children as they start to gain more autonomy or used by anyone when out and about – for example when running or walking home – for added peace of mind.
“It is definitely a trend that is set to increase as the technology continues to develop. In the future using a tracker to protect loved ones and smaller valuable possessions will become the norm. People will carry them much like they carry their keys and mobile phone.”