By Nicky Zarras
Vehicle theft is a reality since the beginning of time. In Nevada I see several vehicles taken each week. When they are gone it is a guessing game what their destination or condition, if and when they are returned, will be. But what if you have the ability to be notified if the vehicle was moved and where it is going. Then you can have local law enforcement intercept the perpetrators and recover the vehicle. Patrick Mogavero (MSTA President) sent me a Invoxia Cellular GPS Tracker (www.invoxia.com/us/ gps-tracker MSRP $129.00) for review. It is a small (4.1 x 1 x .4 inch) standalone (has its own battery) GPS tracker (USA only, unlimited range.) Due to its size you can also put it in backpacks, briefcases, or children’s clothes (it has an emergency button.)
Some features: GPS tracking notification by time interval; anti-theft alerts (if moved), it is accurate to a few dozen yards then the proximity radar zeros into the final position; Geofencing alerts (notify if tracker is in a specific area); and history of tracks. The zone alert creates a selectable size radius bubble, and you can mark arriving and leaving or both. You can receive alerts by email or text messages. It links to the IFTTT (check ifttt.com for info) automation platform. Your data can be logged onto a spreadsheet. It has an on/off switch with single led/buzzer and Micro-USB port (cable included.) Charging time is 90 minutes. Run time depends on how often you program the location notification interval (5, 10, or 30 minutes.) Run time will vary from two to seven weeks. You get one free year of service; after that the yearly fee is $39.90. The unit patches to your cell phone with iOS and Android application updates on the App Store and Google Play Store. iOS 12.0 or higher, compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch Android 5.0 (Lollipop) or higher. Works with 4G. Invoxia GPS Tracker updates from the application using Bluetooth. Comes with a one year warranty and support. Check the website for compatibility with your phone.
Product test: I charged the unit, then downloaded the App to my LG phone (T-Mobile.) I plugged in the tracker, waited for it to activate the tracker; and I went through the menu to update the software and program it via Bluetooth link. The phone display has either a paper map or a GPS satellite map. The first two times I cycled it, it had two wrong addresses, one on the other side of the hospital and the other on the street behind mine. The third time I cycled it found my correct address. The landmark position was correct each time. On the phone you can adjust all desired options from the menu. I set the position in the garage. I then moved the tracker to inside the house to photograph the unit. It sent me a text message that it was moved, and also it informed me that I tilted the tracker. I checked my email and the company sent me an instructional user manual. I reviewed the user reports online and it seems to work the best in the USA. This is a viable option to protect your asset whether vehicle or personal. I will see how it works long term when the weather cools.