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High Tech Hide and Seek Devices For Kids and Grown Ups

by GPS4US 2010-03-22 01:31



The current popular outdoor activity Geocaching has caught the interests of major GPS companies to create mobile devices for adults and kids alike.The organization Groundspeak first created the Geocaching project, which has recently turned into a phenomenon. The activity calls for participants to venture off using GPS devices for their digital treasure hunt.

Today, Magellan has released a new outdoor GPS device dedicated solely for outdoor sport craze. Magellan is in on the game in a big way with the eXplorists GC. The mobile device is a 2.2-inch color screen hand held GPS that embeds 10,000 Geocaches adventures all over the world.

The eXpoirusts GC is lightweight and powered by 2 AA batteries and has a battery life for up to 18 hours. The GPS device also includes a SiRF StarIII GPS chipset and will be available in April of this year.

“The eXplorist GC is made for Geocaching with an uncomplicated interface and the ability to sort and search thousands of Geocaches” explained Magellan. “eXplorist GC has tons of fun and familiar graphics such as smiley faces for logs and merit-based awards to show off your Geocaching expertise.”

But GPS devices and the game of Geocaching are not just for grown ups anymore. Already enjoyed by millions of people world wide the outdoor activity has become very popular with families and especially kids.

Just last year Apishere debuted the Geomate Jr. created specifically for kids. The Geomate Jr. is designed to make the Geocaching accessible to families and children of all ages and comes with approximately 250,000 Geocache locations covering all 50 U.S. states.

Though most GPS receivers required to locate Geocaches have been expensive and difficult to use, “[i]t’s the extreme ease of use and out-of-the-box ability that makes Geomate Jr so unique and family-friendly.” said Warren Hewerdine, co-inventor of Geomate.jr and senior director of marketing at Apisphere.

With the combination of technology, outdoor activity and excitement the Geomate Jr stands to encourage kids to play outside instead of being glued to the tube be it internet or video games. “It also offers a way to reconnect our children with the joy of the outdoors, and encourages them to take advantage of the natural environment,” said Hewerdine.

Recreational Equipment, Inc. (REI, the nationwide outdoor gear and apparel company has signed on as one of first retailers to sell Geomate. REI is committed to introduce the youth to nature by providing such products.

“Whether it’s in a local park, down the street, or in the back country, recreating outdoors can create lifelong memories and an appreciation for nature for families everywhere,” said Mike Cannon, REI director of Merchandising for camp, travel and water sports.

Statics by the Outdoor Foundation concludes that outdoor activity or play among kids between the ages of 6-17 has declined by 11 % in 2008, with the sharpest fall taking place among ages 6 to 12.

Groundspeak and Apisphere believe that Geomate Jr will expand the Geocaching community allowing millions more to enjoy the benefits of this outdoor activity.

“There’s nothing else like Geomate.Jr on the market today,” said Jeremy Irish, co-founder and CEO of Groundspeak, Inc. “The device has the perfect combination of design, simplicity, and functionality that makes it suitable for every member of the family and that’s what we want; the ability for everyone to enjoy the activity of Geocaching together.”




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