Hi, Mi Fans!
If you’ve ever been hiking, or gone to a music festival or state fair, you know how easy it is to lose track of your friends. If you've ever tried to find your friends at these places, you know how terrible cell phones can be at tracking them down. Even if you could hear what they're saying over the noisy crowd, you'd still have a lot of a time trying to figure out just which tree they're next to, or exactly what kind of red t-shirt they're wearing. Apps like Find My Friends or Google Maps won't do much good in this scenario either. Lynq is a gadget that fixes this problem with an ultra-simple premise: it simply tells you how far and in what direction your friends are, no data connection required.
What is it?
The palm-sized device is as simple as can be: there’s only one button, and the sole purpose of Lynq is to show the distance and direction of other people in your group via a tiny circular screen. No pins on a map, no coordinates, no turn-by-turn directions. Just a vector accurate to within a couple of feet that works anywhere outdoors. The little blob that points in their direction moves around as quick as a compass and gets smaller as they get farther away, broadening out to a full circle as you get within a few feet.
The peanut-shaped device uses a combination of GPS and kinetic positioning to tell where you are and where any linked Lynqs are, and on the screen, all you see is: Ellie, 240 feet that way. It uses long-range, low-power frequencies to connect to other Lynq devices and GPS for location, so no phones or Wi-Fi are needed. Lynq says it uses a custom antenna and users will have a closed, private network dedicated to the group.
On the face of the device is an e-Ink screen, which consumes far less battery than a traditional LCD. It only has one button, with which you either quick or long press in order to navigate through the menu. LynQ says this is to keep the device simple, but it does mean it had to be creative when designing a way to enter in names without a traditional alphanumeric keyboard. To do so, you'd essentially rotate the device around, using the accelerometer to align the arrow with your chosen letter. Press the button to select, and repeat.
How to Operate?
When ready to go, it'll show you your friend's name, their distance in kilometres, miles or number of feet and then a darkened line that acts as the arrow. The arrow will move in the direction of your friend, and the closer you get to them, the wider that arrow will get. The single button switches between people you’re tracking and activates the device’s few features.
It’s a great little device and super intuitive to operate. It's totally accurate and responsive even when the screen is off, it’s always receiving the data. Lynq could be a great help not just with outdoor group trips, but also for parents wanting to keep track of kids and pets, people travelling to remote areas, and friends at festivals (who often deal with minimal reception and directions to meet like “I’m in the middle of the crowd”).
Check out the LYNQ in Action:
So, Mi Fans, do you like this device? In my opinion, it’s great for outdoor activities with friends, but think about how helpful it could be for tracking kids or pets, for rescue workers! Please drop your opinions in the comments section below!
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