21st Century Lost-and-Found: High tech gadgets that find themselves

It’s the classic sunglasses-on-your-head scenario, especially when you’re in a rush to get out of the house: add up all the hours you spend looking for things that are right under your nose (or under that pile of mail on your kitchen counter) and you’ll probably be horrified.

We use embedded microchips to help find lost pets and GPS technology to track down stolen vehicles. But what all those other things in life that we rely on and have a tendency to disappear: our bicycles, smartphones, wallets, handbags, house and car keys?Gadget

The New York Times article, “In Your Pocket, a Lost-and-Found,” was written by a journalist who lost his carry-on bag in a yellow New York City cab. Thanks to a traceable credit card receipt the story had a happy ending, but it took a month to sort out. Has something similar happened to you, and if so, how did you handle it?

Good news may be on the horizon, however: some soon-to-be-released gadgets were developed with the goal to make our lives less stressful when our stuff gets lost or goes missing.

  • “Linquet” was designed to stop your things from going missing in the first place. A cloud-based, Bluetooth-enabled device, Linquet sounds an alarm when you and your items are separated. Linquet’s creators claim the product will trigger an alarm if you and your items drift beyond a certain distance apart. Each device costs around $30 and you can learn more at www.linquet.com.
  • “StickNFind” are quarter-sized “location stickers” that run on watch batteries and claim to last up to a year. The stickers are Bluetooth-enabled and can be located using a smart phone. Available in several colors, two stickers cost $49.99. Learn more at www.sticknfind.com.
  • “Tile” doesn’t run on batteries and its developers claim it can last up to a year (you’ll get an envelope for recycling along with your renewal reminder). The product uses GPS and crowd sourcing to help locate lost items, establishing a wider range to find a lost item, especially if there are plenty of other Tiles in your neighborhood. Tile is set to ship out this winter. One Tile costs $18.95; $56.85 gets you four Tiles. You can order them on www.thetileapp.com.

Linquet, StickNFind and Tile are just three examples of some of the new products out there. We have not tried these products ourselves and do not endorse or recommend any particular product. If you are interested in these types of products you should do your own research before making any purchases.

Headquartered in Boston, Bunker Hill Insurance provides home insurance to customers in Massachusetts and Connecticut. Bunker Hill is a member of The Plymouth Rock Group of Companies, which together write and manage over $1 billion in homeowner’s and auto insurance throughout the northeast.