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CES 2006

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UTStarcom Moto TXTR Spotwave Wherify  

Wherify was still showing off the same tiny Ericsson T28 style handset for the very young and very old. Although the phone is still the same one we saw over a year ago, Wherify has cemented the details of the service.

The handset has 5 one touch dial numbers (including one for 911) which are programmed via coded sms sent from Wherify's web interface. Although outgoing calls are limited to 5 numbers, incoming calls can come from any number.

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Guardians can log into Wherify's site and request a location at anytime, or they can schedule a location ping (which the company calls breadcrumbs) at regular intervals. The system sends an sms ping to the handset which then takes a minute to lock down a GPS signal and open up a GPRS connection to send location data back to Wherify.

The Wherify has a second generation GPS chipset that is capable of locking onto satellites in cars and wooden buildings. However if no GPS signal can be found, Wherify will at least return the location of the tower the handset is currently attached to. Guardians can then use the web interface to display the location on either a street or aerial view map.

The Wherify set has already launched in a few South American countries and will launch in the US and Canada sometime in April or May. Wherify promised it would be out in the States before Mother's Day. They could not say which carrier it will launch with, but the device is a GSM/GPRS unit and was being demo'd with a Cingular SIM.

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