LAGUNA NIGUEL, Calif., Aug. 31, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — Today, Iconosys, Inc., a leader in mobile safety communication and life-style Smartphone applications is proud to announce the next in its series of PunkBlocker™ Smartphone Apps. LatchKey Kid™ notifies parents when their children get home from school with text message to phone or instant messenger service like Skype, Yahoo Instant Messenger, and others.
A 1944 NBC documentary gave the title “Latchkey Kid” to the children that had to return home from school alone while one parent was enlisted in the armed forces and the other had to work to support the family during World War II. Of course, there have been generations of latchkey kids in the modern era as family survival often requires that children – perhaps as young as 9 or 10 years of age – make their way home from school or otherwise fend for themselves while their parents or parent finish the workday. This circumstance is well depicted in the much acclaimed movie, “The Changeling” (based on a true story), where a single working mother in late 1920s Los Angeles must trust that her son will return home safely from school, and must deal with the tragic results that follow from his abduction and disappearance. While these children vary across the age spectrum(1), what they all share is the fact that must fend for themselves, both on the way home from school and at home until their parents come home from work.
While leaving children unsupervised is a risk that millions of parents choose to take each day, usually driven by economic realities that require parents to be away from home earning a living and supporting the household, the problem of unaccompanied children becoming unaccounted for – for short or long stretches of time – remains a series issue, whether the latchkey kid is at home alone or is in unsupervised transit from school to home. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, 797,500 children are reported missing annually, averaging 2,185 reported missing each day.
LatchKey Kid™ is an App that runs on the monitored user’s (child’s) Smartphone, and utilizes the built-in GPS technology and onboard TetherTogether™ technology provided by Iconosys to enable parents, guardians, spouses, and even siblings to track the travel patterns and whereabouts of the monitored child. Iconosys’ LatchKey™ technology takes a step in the right direction to help track, and provide extended security for, children.
LatchKey Kid™ Features:
- Password protected Settable Point (i.e.: front door, driveway, family members, or other)
- Settable trigger point perimeter 15-100 Meters (i.e.: front door or front yard)
- Triggers and sends clickable GPS or physical location when the child crosses Settable Point
- Set notification intervals once child has reached the trigger point
- Available on Android OS phones
- LatchKey Notice compatible with iPhone, Symbian, Windows Phone, Android mobile phones, as well as Skype, Yahoo IM, Google Voice and other SMS Enabled utilities and devices
“I remember being a Latchkey Kid when I was seven or eight years old, in the second grade,” said Wayne Irving II, CEO of Iconosys. “While my parents were pretty vigilant most of the time as to our whereabouts, I remember certain situations where mom and dad had no idea when we made it home, or even if we made it home by the time they had themselves gotten home from work. Since many children nowadays have their cell phones, so why not utilize those devices as beacons to parents, so that they can keep tabs on where their kids are and do not worry whether their child actually arrived home safely.”
LatchKey Kid™ is added to an already impressive group of Smartphone safety apps protecting children, seniors, and loved-ones, including Guards Up!™, My Max Speed™, DriveReply™ and Trick or Tracker,™ which has been covered on Saturday Night Live’s Weekend Update with Seth Meyers, Good Morning America and The Today Show. See the entire portfolio of Iconosys safety apps at www.iconosys.com.
LatchKey Kid™ is available for free download for back-to-school from the Android Market and Iconosys.com until September 7, after which time it will be available for $1.99.
About Iconosys, Inc.
Iconosys, a member of the National Organization for Youth Safety and the maker of the widely used and well publicized DriveReply™, SMSW!sh™, Trick or Tracker™, and Tell My Geo™ Smartphone apps, is developing technologies and technology driven products for its clients with a goal toward designing apps that enrich, enhance, ultimately make safer, our day to day lives.
Iconosys also develops both client-side and server-side applications that, it believes, will be unique and trendsetting and are designed to fit the time-sensitive, constantly evolving needs of today’s and tomorrow’s consumers. Iconosys and its client-side app development team are specialists in developing Smartphone and tablet optimized solutions.
(1) Some states do have laws providing guidance for the minimum age at which a child may be left at home unsupervised by an adult; for example, in Georgia the minimum legal age requirement for leaving a child at home unsupervised is 8 years old. (Georgia Department Human Services, 7/2/07)