The fact that you can use apps and websites to find a lost phone means if you leave it behind at a restaurant or someone steals it from you, there is a greater chance today that you’ll get it back than there was in the past. So why shouldn’t that apply to your car too?
Enter CarLock. This little device is almost identical in size and technology as the Insurance Box we looked at recently. Except this time, the little black box you plug into your car is there for you to monitor at any time – and to alert you of unusual activity.
At $199 up front and $9.99 per month, it’s not cheap – but your car is worth a lot of money right? There’s an introductory Australian price of $99 which makes it great value, the question is – do we need it?
Motor Vehicle Theft is on the decline. As cars get better theft gets harder, and as time goes on even second or third hand cars are packed with anti-theft technology from the factory.
As for the device itself – Carlock contains with in it sensors that can detect vibration, GPS to determine location and a mobile SIM to synchronise all the data it gathers from those sensors and from your cars on-board computer with the Carlock cloud.
Your mobile phone then provides an interface to that information though a log of activity plus push notifications on your phone at certain times.
Using a simple calendar you can set times of days and days of the week when the car is “locked” – this doesn’t actually lock the car or prevent it being driven away, but it sets those times as periods when you should be alerted to activity on the car.
If the car is “locked” in Carlock – and you open a door – you get an alert on your phone that “Vibration Detected”.
When the car is started – notification comes “Car Engine Started” and as it drives away “Car moved”.
Open the app and you can see exactly where the car is – and if you choose to “follow the car” the path it take is drawn out on the map.
It’s fantastic technology, 15-20 years ago they would have sold like hotcakes. Today, if you’ve got concerns about car theft, or want the kind of alerts then it does that perfectly.
Setup is a breeze and doesn’t take much technical knowledge at all – you just need to locate the “OBD” port on your car which is easy to find – using Google.
Check it out at Carlock.co
Trev is a Technology Commentator, Dad, Speaker and Rev Head.
He produces and hosts two popular podcasts, EFTM and Two Blokes Talking Tech. He also appears on over 50 radio stations across Australia weekly, and is the resident Tech Expert on Channel 9’s Today Show each day and appears regularly on A Current Affair.
Father of three, he is often found down in his Man Cave.