dl021
Posts: 10836
Joined: Fri May 21, 2004 12:04 pm

Question For Parents

Thu Sep 15, 2005 3:58 am

I'm not offering to sell anyone here anything. I'm taking an informal survey of people around the world to give me some background.

Who here would purchase a GPS locating device in the $499 range for their family vehicle or their childrens cars?

This device would enable people to locate their vehicle by going to a website that will display the position and other information about the vehicle. It also can send a text message to any concerned person (i.e. parent) if the vehicle exceeds a certain speed or leaves a designated area (marked on a map). It also acts similarly to LoJack, except it is not limited to areas with equipped police coverage. This works whereever there is cell phone coverage.

Tell me what you think of the benefits or drawbacks of such a system, and whether you think that having this information available would make your family safer.
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TedTAce
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RE: Question For Parents

Thu Sep 15, 2005 4:02 am

I would.

Knowing what I know about myself as a teenager alone with a car, and how my kids likely will be, this is a no brainer.
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ANCFlyer
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RE: Question For Parents

Thu Sep 15, 2005 4:23 am

Yup, no problem. Not as a spy device, rather as a safety device . . .

Problems might arise when going from one state to another - one cell service to another. Although many of them work on a competitors system, that is not always the case. As an example, Verizon won't work in Alaska . . . or it didn't a year ago.

Is it "tamper proof" . . . can it be turned on and off like an Airbag for example? Can it be easily removed from the vehicle ir made to cause the vehicle to become non-startable (hellofa word there huh) if it's removed, tampered with or otherwise disabled?
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KROC
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RE: Question For Parents

Thu Sep 15, 2005 4:29 am

Hey, Hulk Hogan does it, I'm gonna do it too.
 
dl021
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RE: Question For Parents

Thu Sep 15, 2005 4:33 am

Quoting ANCFlyer (Reply 2):
Problems might arise when going from one state to another - one cell service to another. Although many of them work on a competitors system, that is not always the case. As an example, Verizon won't work in Alaska . . . or it didn't a year ago.

The device works on the newest cellular technology and works on any cell system. I don't know where it would not work if there is cellular coverage of some sort.

Quoting ANCFlyer (Reply 2):
Is it "tamper proof" . . . can it be turned on and off like an Airbag for example? Can it be easily removed from the vehicle ir made to cause the vehicle to become non-startable (hellofa word there huh) if it's removed, tampered with or otherwise disabled?



Nothing that can be put on a car cannot be taken off. That said the device is not easily located and not easily disabled unless you are an electronics technician. There is a starter interrupt feature on the device that enables an owner to prevent a thief from starting the vehicle if stolen. This also allows parents to prevent their children from cranking up the car if it's being used unsafely. If the device is tampered with, and has the starter interrupt system in place then tampering will prevent the vehicle from starting unless one knows what they are doing. 98% of people won't be able to.
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ORFflyer
Posts: 3142
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RE: Question For Parents

Thu Sep 15, 2005 4:48 am

Without question I will put one of these in my son's car, and he knows it. It's a safety device you can't do without these days.

A little similarity was the cell phone. Five years ago, I would have called you nuts if you told me I was going to get my boy a phone.... well, I did when he turned 12. (Picture phone too.... more on that later) There is nothing like dialing him up and asking, where are you, what are you doing, who are you with? He didn't like it at first, but as time went on, he seems to have learned more about the value of safety, and WHY a parent needs to know these things.

And now, a funny little anecdote about the picture phone... one day, (when I knew he went left instead of right) I called him and asked him the usual. He gave me all the "right" answers. "I'm up here at the ballfield with so-n-so, yada, yada, yada." I told him to take a picture of the concession stand. He asked why... I told him about the time and date stamp that I wanted to see on that picture when he got home.  Big grin  Big grin He confessed he wasn't at the ballfield. I told him I knew that.

We laugh abut it now, but he definitely knows that me and his mom do these things for the right reasons. Even though he doesn't always like them.

Chip
 
airlinelover
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RE: Question For Parents

Thu Sep 15, 2005 5:36 am

I'm not a parent but I would not mind that..

Chris
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Superfly
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RE: Question For Parents

Thu Sep 15, 2005 5:41 am

Just as long as my wife wouldn't be able to put one on me if I were to ever get married.


Thanks TedTAce.  

[Edited 2005-09-14 23:01:21]

[Edited 2005-09-14 23:01:40]
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TedTAce
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RE: Question For Parents

Thu Sep 15, 2005 5:49 am

Quoting Superfly (Reply 7):
I got married.

 rotfl 
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dl021
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RE: Question For Parents

Thu Sep 15, 2005 6:08 am

OK...I'm getting a feel for it here...

in addition to the previous thoughts tell me, please, where you think this should be marketed to attract your attention. I don't want an MBA opinion here, I get those left and right. Tell me some ideas of where you might think that you'd appreciate learning about a product like this.

Thanks in advance
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Pope
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RE: Question For Parents

Thu Sep 15, 2005 6:26 am

My child has a long way to go before she's able to drive but my wife and I have already given this some thought.

I think you need to balance your child's need to feel that they are being respected as an adult with the dangers that modern day life places in front of them. Who among us didn't do something stupid in a car when we were growing up?

I think that we would not install the device unless our child did something to cause us to question their judgment. I know that one of the best things my father did for me was allow me to make some mistakes. I feel that I learned a bunch from the mistakes.

I think if you act like "big brother" teenagers tend to rebel.

A parent's role is to set limits. A childs role is to test those limits. The overall situation works best when both parent and child push against those limits. If either side is overly dominant, then trouble is almost certain.

When the time comes, we'll sit down with our daughter and make it damn clear that she has to earn our respect. If she does, she'll enjoy tremendous freedom (and be held to a very high standard with respect to responsibility). If she can't demonstrate that she's capable of that responsibility, the freedoms will be reduced accordingly.

For example, I for one NEVER had a curfew. But my parents expected that I would be home at a reasonable hour (reasonable being a relative thing depending on time of year and day of the week) OR call and let them know that I was going to be late. They did this not because they wanted to keep tracks on me, but because they would worry as any parent would if your child was out late and you had no idea where they were - this is in the days before cell phones. That arrangement worked pretty well for us and I hope that I'll be able to work out such an arrangment with my daughter.

Nobody ever understands the love a parent has for a child nor the amount of worrying you do as a parent until you become one. In my experience the vast majority of parents would gladly sacrifice their life for their child in a heartbeat. Therefore, while we all over-react at some point, the over-reaction is caused by fear that our most precious belonging will be hurt.

Just my thoughts.
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FlyingTexan
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RE: Question For Parents

Thu Sep 15, 2005 6:27 am

Quoting DL021 (Reply 9):
where you think this should be marketed to attract your attention.

At a car dealership as an add on, electronics store like Best Buy, or auto parts store.
"Wouldn't your boss like to fly home nonstop at 4:30 on a Friday afternoon?" -Airline Exec to Congressional Staffer
 
DrDeke
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RE: Question For Parents

Thu Sep 15, 2005 7:32 am

I am not (yet) a parent. I am 22 years old, and I can tell you that there is no way in hell my father would have installed such a device in my car even if it were completely free of charge.

My father raised me to be responsible and to take responsibility for my own actions. I would have considered it a detestable act for him to install such a device in my car, and he would have felt the exact same way.

Obviously not everyone is raised the way I was, and perhaps some children cannot be raised in that way. (Although I don't necessarily accept that as a given truth.) However, as a teenager, I noticed that the acquaintances of mine whose parents tried to "monitor" them closely and generally run their lives tended to get pissed at this monitoring and in turn become even more rebellious and do stupid things solely for the sake of being rebellious - even if they weren't really interested in doing the thing in and of itself!

Obviously I cannot say what I would actually do until I have children and am in the process of raising them myself. However, if it were to come to a point where I felt it necessary or wise to install a tracking device in my child's car, I would feel that this reflected a substantial failure in my parenting of the child.

(Addendum: That last sentence is not intended to say that YOU ARE A FAILURE if you would think about installing this in your child's car. It's just that under my ideas of how to parent a child, if it came to the point where _I_ would think it wise to install such a device in _my_ child's car, _I_ would feel that _I_ personally would have substantially failed in my child raising process.)

-DrDeke
If you don't want it known, don't say it on a phone.
 
QANTASforever
Posts: 5794
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RE: Question For Parents

Thu Sep 15, 2005 7:42 am

Quoting DL021 (Thread starter):
Tell me what you think of the benefits or drawbacks of such a system, and whether you think that having this information available would make your family safer.

I wouldn't do it to them. They are a looooong way off from driving (2x3yo, 1x2month old) There are already very good safety and security devices and services available that don't let a parent invade their child's privacy. I would respect my children enough, and (I hope) have raised them well to the point where I wouldn't have to spy on them.

They'd have their own GPS, a cell phone, and a good car security system - I think that would suffice.

QFF
Fighting for the glory of the Australian Republic.
 
Superfly
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RE: Question For Parents

Thu Sep 15, 2005 7:46 am

Sounds like another product in which fear is the selling point.  Sad
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dl021
Posts: 10836
Joined: Fri May 21, 2004 12:04 pm

RE: Question For Parents

Thu Sep 15, 2005 8:22 am

Quoting Superfly (Reply 14):
Sounds like another product in which fear is the selling point.

Y'know...I would think the same thing. I do as a matter of fact. But I don't have kids....

I have nieces and nephews whose diapers I changed and now know them as 19 year olds. I remember how I was as a teenager and rules were something to be broken and speed was the need in my car. Most kids exceed safe speeds in their cars, and drive dangerously. If this device can force kids to think twice, or let parents know the minute their kids start acting stupid behind the wheel then I'm ok with them doing something about their fears that the kids will do something stupid. We all did stupid crap that we were lucky to survive. Some of our friends weren't.

I think that these devices are also good for recovering vehicles if stolen. We use them for repossession tools.
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Superfly
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RE: Question For Parents

Thu Sep 15, 2005 8:24 am

I'd be more afraid of siblings throwing a metal stapler at one another.  Wink
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dl021
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RE: Question For Parents

Thu Sep 15, 2005 8:30 am

Dude, we all have our private little hells. I'm going to send this to my sister, and duck!
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AeroWesty
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RE: Question For Parents

Thu Sep 15, 2005 8:38 am

Quoting DL021 (Thread starter):
Who here would purchase a GPS locating device in the $499 range for their family vehicle or their childrens cars?

I think $499 might be a tad high. It's already on the market for about $295.

http://www.vehicle-tracking.com/

Some rental car companies have been using the device for quite some time to tack on extra charges for when they can detect you're speeding:

http://writ.news.findlaw.com/ramasastry/20050823.html
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dl021
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RE: Question For Parents

Thu Sep 15, 2005 10:04 am

Quoting AeroWesty (Reply 18):
Quoting DL021 (Thread starter):
Who here would purchase a GPS locating device in the $499 range for their family vehicle or their childrens cars?

I think $499 might be a tad high. It's already on the market for about $295.

http://www.vehicle-tracking.com/

Some rental car companies have been using the device for quite some time to tack on extra charges for when they can detect you're speeding:

http://writ.news.findlaw.com/ramasas....html

OK...when you buy the average GPS device for wholesale, or around $300, you still have to pay an activation fee of usually $25, a monthly service fee that totals between $30 and 60 per year, and a per use fee (called a hit fee) of between $.25 and $2 per ping or attempt to locate (the one I mention includes enough locates to satisfy the average need, but more are available and the charge only applies to locates, not pings). Sometimes they use a sliding scale to charge customers with fleets by the month. Then you have to pay for installation, usually between $70 and $125. By the time you are done with everything you are sitting around $450 to $500...and these are at wholesale prices. I see these in shops for $795 and higher. At the price I'm posting a person would get all fees included, as well as installation and future servicing.

The one linked is not a real time tracking unit and uses the older cellular technology that will be phased out in a couple of years, and it is not hardwired into the car in a well concealed place. It requires batteries and regular maintenance. It also has no real return policy if it doesn't work well. The product I'm mentioning has a useful return policy. What you posted is useful in certain ways, but can be easily lost, turned off, or left in someone elses car in addition to the other things mentioned.

In order to get the real comparison go to the same website and look at their LandSeaAir 7100 product. It is the comparable model, manufactured by a company in California called Airecept and remarketed under the LSA label, to what I am mentioning and retails prior to fees and installation at $495. It also uses the older tech. Those are available on the market for much lower prices elsewhere, by the way.

Does that help clear up the differences or make them muddier? It's certainly helping me with market research.

[Edited 2005-09-15 03:10:43]
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AeroWesty
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RE: Question For Parents

Thu Sep 15, 2005 10:09 am

Quoting DL021 (Reply 19):

Does that help clear up the differences or make them muddier?

LOL, yeah, that helps clear things up somewhat. I saw a few units, but just posted one. $499 would seem reasonable as an all-inclusive price, but a lower entry price followed by a monthly fee would keep a revenue stream coming in, and allow more people to utilize it. Is there any way of integrating the technology you have in mind to the in-dash GPS units already installed into some cars?
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dl021
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RE: Question For Parents

Thu Sep 15, 2005 10:12 am

Monthly fees are going away in this marketplace. Competition is killing it.
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Aleksandar
Posts: 2941
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RE: Question For Parents

Thu Sep 15, 2005 10:22 am

Quoting DL021 (Reply 9):
Tell me some ideas of where you might think that you'd appreciate learning about a product like this.

Try with car dealers and, if there are any websites for parents of teenagers, that would be good as well.

I don't have kids, but this product seems very interesting. I was a young driver once and there were moments when I wanted to be located (especially with tyre crisis and I had quite a bit of those).

The only problem is how could parents change their kids' minds about speeding? Let's say, you KNOW the kid is driving too fast and you TELL him(her) that, but in the end you're facing an average teenager that is extremely stubborn and does things his own way (as kids always do). Despite all the benefits of the product, it can also give parents even more headaches.
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dl021
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RE: Question For Parents

Thu Sep 15, 2005 9:45 pm

again...thanks for all the insight here.....it's helping me get ready for my meeting tomorrow..

Quoting Aleksandar (Reply 22):
if there are any websites for parents of teenagers,

Does anyone know of any?

Quoting Aleksandar (Reply 22):
The only problem is how could parents change their kids' minds about speeding? Let's say, you KNOW the kid is driving too fast and you TELL him(her) that, but in the end you're facing an average teenager that is extremely stubborn and does things his own way (as kids always do).

Well, I don't know that you'll change the teenagers mind, but you can find out exactly when they go over whatever limit you set for them and then remove their driving priviledges...or the car. Parents are responsible for the actions of their teenage children in many places, and if you let your 17 year old continually act irresponsibly you could be liable in civil or criminal courts if something ugly happens. You certainly would be morally.
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aloges
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RE: Question For Parents

Thu Sep 15, 2005 10:12 pm

$500 for big brother... no thanks. If I have children and they accept 50% of what I'll try to teach them about self-reliance and personal responsibility, there won't be any need for that kind of gadget. I really don't care what anyone does as long as I can rest assured he/she won't screw up.
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dl021
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RE: Question For Parents

Thu Sep 15, 2005 10:57 pm

Quoting Aloges (Reply 24):
$500 for big brother... no thanks. If I have children and they accept 50% of what I'll try to teach them about self-reliance and personal responsibility, there won't be any need for that kind of gadget. I really don't care what anyone does as long as I can rest assured he/she won't screw up.

That's admirable. If you could tell the rest of us how to prevent teenagers from being stupid on occasion then I think we could write a book and become rich.

Oh, and the other thing is this. The next time you or someone you know is lost on the side of the road with a flat or engine trouble. Or, to take it to an extreme has been kidnapped or disappears, you can show me a better way to help find them when they call in a panic, or don't call at all. I'm being serious.

Big Brother is already out there, this is a way to monitor the safety of your family. It's up to you whether you plan on using it when you have kids of your own. I think that your perspective will change on that over the next dozen or so years.
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aloges
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RE: Question For Parents

Fri Sep 16, 2005 12:17 am

Quoting DL021 (Reply 25):
If you could tell the rest of us how to prevent teenagers from being stupid on occasion then I think we could write a book and become rich.

 Silly Should we opt for "Martha Stewart II" as the writer's name?

In seriousness, I (or anyone else) certainly can't stop teenagers from being stupid every now and then, but I'll try my best and teach my possible future kids how to not be too stupid. I know this may sound arrogant or whatever you want to call it, but if I happen to be as good as my parents at that, then I won't be in for much trouble.
This is a bit like these little "back in the days" stories; when I was young, no one needed to know where exactly I was playing because I wasn't the kid to get into trouble. Same for driving: I love it when my passengers fall asleep.  Wink
That's what my point is all about: no need of control due to trustworthiness.

Quoting DL021 (Reply 25):
The next time you or someone you know is lost on the side of the road with a flat or engine trouble.

Cell phones, I'd suggest. I love them for the "anywhere, anytime reachability", but not for the "24/7 control" they offer.

Quoting DL021 (Reply 25):
Or, to take it to an extreme has been kidnapped or disappears,

To be perfectly honest, these things just don't happen over here. People in Germany hardly ever get kidnapped, and unless you're the child of truly rich parents the risk is about nil.

Quoting DL021 (Reply 25):
I think that your perspective will change on that over the next dozen or so years.

Obviously, about every perspective I have is subject to change. Who knows where I'll be in ten years... I hope Norway, but that's off topic.  Wink
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Aleksandar
Posts: 2941
Joined: Sat Jul 29, 2000 11:43 pm

RE: Question For Parents

Fri Sep 16, 2005 11:54 am

Quoting DL021 (Reply 25):
Big Brother is already out there

It certainly is. One should do usual things like going to the bank and shopping mall and it will be recorded on some of the camera. Although it sounds scary, I don't mind that. In fact, I'm trying to see positive things in that.

Quoting DL021 (Reply 25):
The next time you or someone you know is lost on the side of the road with a flat or engine trouble.

Experienced it with the flat tyre first time I ever drove alone and then I didn't have cell-phone. Not a nice thing to happen to a driver.

Quoting DL021 (Reply 23):
Does anyone know of any?

Well, the one that comes to my mind is fatherhood.org (if I remember well). You never know, somebody might be interested there or you can find links to similar sites.

Quoting DL021 (Reply 23):
Parents are responsible for the actions of their teenage children in many places, and if you let your 17 year old continually act irresponsibly you could be liable in civil or criminal courts if something ugly happens.

And sometimes parents can be even more irresponsible than their kids. Few years ago, some very rich guy from Belgrade bought his son a Porsche as a birthday present and that spoiled brat was driving like crazy until he killed three innocent people in the tunnel in Belgrade. You know what his father did? Used his influence so the charges were dropped and bought a Mercedes to his little brat!

After all, the most important thing is how kids are raised, but this electronic device could be very useful, unless some jelaous wife installs it in her husband's car (he,he).

I heard that Volvo has developed a smart key for new drivers which limits the speed to 90 km/h. Have you heard about that?
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