Omar from Jado Pado joined us as usual this afternoon to run us through the most up to date apps and gadgets, that we need in our lives. If you missed it, this is where to catch up!
A few weeks ago we discussed tracking your luggage to have absolute peace of mind when you’re at the airport and on the back of that we recently started thinking about what else you could potentially track while you’re traveling and are away from home.
From plants, planes, cars, packages, devices, boats, ships, people, pets, your health, fitness, good, money, investments, traffic, news and sports. The list of stuff you can track with your smartphone or your other devices is absolutely incredible!
We’ve decided to focus on a few interesting ones this afternoon!
Last week someone wrote in and asked what the best flight tracking app was? I’ve done a bit of research:
FlightRadar24 for iOS and Android Apps available. Pro version costs AED 15.
- Free version has ads, paid version doesn’t and has better reviews!
- Love the open your camera and point to the sky to identify feature.
- Really nice website as well.
FlightView for iOS and Android Apps available. Pro version costs AED 4.
- All of the great flight tracking features that you’re after.
- Email or forward your itinerary to firstname.lastname@example.org and it’ll automatically load and track your flights!
FlightAware for iOS and Android, Windows Phone Apps available.
- A bit more of a geeky service.
- They get data from 50 different government air traffic control and private datalink sources and also operate a worldwide network of ADS-B and Mode S receives that track ADS-B or Mode S equipped aircraft flying around the world.
- You can build or request FlightAware to send your a receiver with which you can provide data to FlightAware who in turn will give you live (non-delayed) data, a bunch of other cool stuff and a free FlightAware Enterprise Account!
- Very cool if you want to get geeky about tracking!
I couldn’t resist throwing this one in as it’s super cool.
MarineTraffic for Android, iOS, Windows Phone Apps Available.
- From Yatchs to Rigs to Oil Tankers. Track a whole bunch of ships!
- MarineTraffic is part of an open, community-based project.
- Provides free real-time information to the public, about ship movements and ports, mainly across the coast-lines of many countries around the world.
- The initial data collection is based on the Automatic Identification System (AIS).
- You can join in and contribute data by installing an AIS receiver and sharing your data.
- As of December 2004, the International Maritime Organisation requires all vessels over 299GT (gross tonnage) to carry an AIS transponder on board.
A bit of a change in direction by looking at how to track your plants while you’re away!
Parrot Flower Power for AED 217, Plant Sensor. Android & iOS apps available.
- Stick the Flower Power into the ground or in a pot.
- Flower Power will monitor and analyse sunlight, temperature, fertilizer and moisture, the four parameters essential to your plant’s health.
- When Flower Power detects that your attention is required it’ll notify you on your smartphone or tablet.
- You take action to save your plants!
- Works over Bluetooth Smart or Bluetooth Lowe Energy, which means you need to be in proximity to it.
- Works out of the box with IFTT (more on this in a bit). For example, turn my light on when my plant requires watering.
- If you use the same account, you can use multiple devices to get access to your data. This would mean leaving a device at home that could pick up your data and send it to Parrot’s web service, which would sync with your other device when you’re out and about. Not perfect, but if you care about your plants, it’s worth the trouble!
A Really Cool Service
IFTTT (IF This Then THAT) Free. iOS and Android Apps Available.
If you’ve not come across IFTTT, it’s a super cool service that allows you to integrate two apps together using what the call a recipe.
DO Recipes = Tap a button and do something with a single tap.
IF Recipes = Run automatically in the background. If this, then that.
Some super cool use cases include:
Car, Bike, Bicycle, Camel Tracking
I started wondering about what would happen if your car were stolen while you were away. We’re super lucky to be living in a very safe city, but this could apply anywhere!
You could go out and plunge on a full on GPS tracker with custom software, or a fleet management solution. Or you could build something a bit more interesting!
1. Grab an older iPhone or Android Device
2. Grab a car charger
3. Grab a super cheap data plan
4. Turn on FindMyPhone on iOS or you can use Android Device Manager on Android (no installation required!)
5. Wire into your car and hide it where no can see it or think to look for it!
6. Can work with a bike, bicycle or other means of transport (camels) with a strong external battery pack to give you 20 to 40 hours of tracking. Plenty of time to find your stolen X.
Android Device Manager is a Google’s official and easy-to-use tool to track your Android phone or tablet. The best thing about it is that you don’t need to install an app to be able to track your devices. The only requirement is that your device is connected to your Google account, turned on and connected to the internet.
Google recently implemented some of ADM’s features into their search results page. This means that you’re able to quickly locate any registered Android device right from the search results. By using the search phrase “where is my phone”, Google displays a little map above the search results in which it will try to find your phone.