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ZoomBak to close down UK service.

We’ve written about ZoomBak’s A-GPS based tracking service before and I’ve had a demo unit tracking my bag for the past few weeks.

The service consists of a tiny £99 black box that gets it’s own location using A-GPS and reports it back to ZoomBak’s servers using Vodafone’s UK network. From there you can track your car, bike, bag or dog (or spouse, child, enemy or anything else you manage to attach the ZoomBak locator to) via a website or SMS. The site also let you setup “safe zones” and you receive e-mail and SMS alerts when the ZoomBak enters or leaves those zones.

Some thought it was a bit pricey but for the peace of mind I actually thought it was reasonable value at £99 for the unit and £10/month service (with a £20 discount for a year’s service in advance) but that doesn’t really matter now as ZoomBak have announced that they are closing down their UK service. Everyone who bought a ZoomBak will be refunded their £99 purchase price and any service they had pre-paid for.

We were planning a big MIR Show feature (no, really. We’d lined up special guests and everything!) that revolved around the ZoomBak that we still might do if the service is still up when the date we’d booked comes around.

6 replies on “ZoomBak to close down UK service.”

You know, I really take little pleasure in saying I told you so, but, er, I told you so.

(Thanks ZoomBak – normally it takes ages for my skepticism to be proved correct. Next – mobile phones shaped like teddy bears)

/m

I know, but I really really liked the zoombak 🙁

I guess I'll have to take a look at homebrew again for my geotracking needs… zoombak was going to give me some nice telemetry for my automatic call routing setup!

Easy: buy cheap GPS-enabled Symbian phone, or just cheap S60 phone with a Bluetooth GPS unit. Actually, sod it. Just a cheap S60 phone. 6120 Classic will do.

Load Zonetag onto it. Set it to auto-start / publish location.

Set Zonetag to publish location to Fire Eagle.

Use just about anything to get the phone's location from Fire Eagle.

Done! On an old, cheap phone, with data for £5/month.

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