Best Buy Ratings and Reviews

Best Buy Ratings and Reviews

Customer Reviews for Insignia™ Little Buddy Child Tracker (Green)

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Insignia™ Little Buddy Child Tracker (Green)

Model: NS-KDTR1
SKU: 9540767
UPC: 600603126437
Keep tabs on your child at all times with this small but sophisticated device that combines GPS and cellular technology to provide you with real-time location updates. The small and lightweight Little Buddy transmitter fits easily into a backpack, lunchbox or other receptacle, making it easy for your child to carry so you can check his or her location at any time using a smartphone or computer. Customizable safety checks allow you to establish specific times and locations where your child is supposed to be — for example, in school — causing the device to alert you with a text message if your child leaves the designated area during that time. Additional real-time alerts let you know when the device's battery is running low so you can take steps to ensure your monitoring isn't interrupted.
Average Customer Rating:
3.429 out of 5
3.4
 out of 
5
(7 Reviews) 7
Open Ratings Snapshot
Rating Snapshot 7 reviews
5 stars
3
4 stars
1
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0
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2
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57% of reviewers would recommend this product to a friend 
(
4 out of 7
)
Customer Reviews for Insignia™ Little Buddy Child Tracker (Green)
Review 1 for Insignia™ Little Buddy Child Tracker (Green)

Inexpensive Peace of Mind

Customer Rating
4.0 out of 5
4.0
Posted by: CaveatVenditor
from SE USA
on 01/25/2011
Value for Price
5.0 out of 5
5.0
Ease of Use
4.0 out of 5
4.0
Durability
4.0 out of 5
4.0
Features
4.0 out of 5
4.0
What's great about it: Price, features.
What's not so great: Tech support; pinpoint accuracy; reliability of notifications
I've had the Buddy for over nine months. At the time, the price was $99. I see now that the price is half of that, which is why I gave it an Excellent for Value for the Price. Back then I probably would have given it a Good, as most other comparable devices were much more expensive.
Based on the reviews that have already been submitted, it seems some people expected more from this device than what it delivers. For them, those previously mentioned more expensive devices might be more appropriate than the Little Buddy.
Here is what it does: By going to a web site and entering your user name and password you can locate the device. Accuracy is usually within 60 yards, sometimes better. If you are looking for 3 yard accuracy, this device is not for you. I purchased it due to a divorce situation. I place the device inside the child's diaper bag, hidden from view. If I need to locate the child (actually the diaper bag which is always with the child), I go to a secured web site, enter my user name and password and click "Locate". Within 2 minutes I will know approximately where the Little Buddy is. I can also engage constant tracking where it tracks every 2 minutes for up to an hour. Both methods will send me both an e-mail and a text message with the latest location. In the past nine months it has not been able to locate the device about five times.
There is also a mobile tracking web site for those times you want to use your smartphone to track the Little Buddy.
In addition to the instant locate, it also has Safety Zone notifications. The child goes to pre-school five times a week. I am notified if the child is not there by a certain time, a time that I have entered into the schedule for that Safety Zone. I am also notified when the child arrives at the Safety Zone and when it leaves the Safety Zone, regardless of the time. The notifications are via text when they fall within the scheduled times, and via text and e-mail when they don't. If the notification is within the schedule it will read "Little Buddy X was at Safety Place Y at 8:00am". If it is not where it should be, it will read "Little Buddy X was not at Safety Place Y at 8:00 am and was located within X number of yards of a street".
I also have it notify me every evening at a certain time to verify that the Little Buddy is at home. This is done via text message. Again, if it is not home, it will send both a text and an e-mail along with the present location.
When the battery runs low, it will send a text and e-mail advising that it needs to be charged. Battery life is usually 6-7 days between charges. It is never turned off, although it can be turned off.
There have been times when the text message portion does not work. This is a bad thing, especially when leaving a Safety Zone before it's supposed to. Although rare, it does happen, which defeats the purpose of the Safety Zone. It appears that Little Buddy's home server checks on it's status in 10 minute intervals, because I will usually get a text 10 minutes after arriving or leaving a Safety Zone with the time of the text being the arrival or departure time. For example, let's say that I have it set to arrive at 7:30. If it is not there at 7:25, it sends out a notification indicating that it is not where it's supposed to be and where it is currently located. Now, let's say it arrives at 7:33. At 7:45 it sends out a message saying that it arrived at 7:45, even though it arrived at 7:33.
Here is the BAD part about the Little Buddy: CUSTOMER SUPPORT IS LOUSY. There's no other way to put it.
I have had to contact Customer Support once in the nine months, and that was the first time the text didn't come in after leaving a Safety Zone (I was more concerned about the Little Buddy leaving the Safety Zone before it was supposed to - such as someone getting the child that wasn't supposed to, than if it notified me ten minutes late). I called the 800 number and I ended up in support center in Argentina. I'm sorry, but they simply don't get it. Argentina, which is the new hotspot for outsourcing tech support, is a step above the Philippines, but not much. If you need tech support I suggest calling and if they can't resolve it, buy another unit, especially if they are below $50.00 now.
As stated in the title of my review, you're buying "cheap peace of mind". The Little Buddy costs $50, plus $14.99 per month for monitoring, which adds up to $200 per year. There are more expensive, more accurate units out there.
If mine broke today, I'd buy another one this afternoon.
I would recommend this to a friend!
+1point
1out of 1found this review helpful.
Review 2 for Insignia™ Little Buddy Child Tracker (Green)

It is just okay at best

Customer Rating
2.0 out of 5
2.0
Posted by: trustButVerify
from Corpus Christi, Texas Metro area
on 01/20/2011
Value for Price
4.0 out of 5
4.0
Ease of Use
3.0 out of 5
3.0
Durability
2.0 out of 5
2.0
Features
4.0 out of 5
4.0
What's great about it: The safety zones are great. scheduling a time check is useless.
What's not so great: inaccurate tracking per time and per location. Scheduling a time check is useless because it just doesnt work well
I have owned the little buddy for 30 days now. The accuracy of the little buddy is not very good. In fact, I believe that they use only cellular technology to determine location even though the documentation suggests/implies that it uses the GPS satellites to determine location. If it really does then it uses vastly old technology. I will get a notification that has a radius of 1.4 miles. The best that I have gotten accuracy-wise is between 12 and 15 yards which is what I would expect on the outside. I have a passive GPS device that I use to correlate against after the fact. So I know that this technology in little buddy is not terribly accurate.
I will say that it is usually good at letting me know when it is on the move until recently. I think that they must've installed a new software update on their server systems because the entering/exiting of safety zones all of the sudden stopped. I have created an extensive set of safety zones and keep adding more as I notice that I need to add them. I like the concept of the safety zones. However, there is a lack of documentation on it, though most of it is obvious. The non-obvious piece is defining the safety zone times. If I want to monitor the entering/exiting of a given safety zone 24x7 I have to create two safety zones on top of each other. I call one AM and the other PM. The default configuration start time shows 12am as does the end time. However if you want the safety zone monitored all 24 hours, does 12am to 12am really work? You would think so, but my testing suggests otherwise. So I created one for 12am to 12pm and one for 12pm to 12am. I'd prefer it if the configuration provided a button to select for all day. That or I'd prefer to configure it for 6am to 545am but it wont accept that sort of configuration because it would span across days which isnt allowed by the validation performed by the submission.
Lastly, last night, my little buddy arrived home from a place and I had the continuous tracking enabled. The continous tracking reported my little buddy at the place for another 20 minutes or so after my little buddy came home and handed me the device. So much for accuracy of location during continuous tracking. My little buddy was in a car for the trip. It is not like there was an issue with connectivity. When there is no connectivity, the software reports device is not found. Instead it now reports a location for 15-20 minutes after the person has left the area even though it is asking the device every two minutes for its location.
Lastly, I bought two of these devices on the same day in the same transaction. One got shipped a day before the other....like that makes sense. I got a blue and a green. The one shipped the after the first arrived first. The one that shipped first arrived about 3 weeks after the other one arrived. Like that makes sense. I submitted a tracking request or whatever you call it to find it and get it to me after about 10 days as it was just ridiculous at that point. I received no indication that they would follow up on it to this day. Fortunately it did finally arrive about 10 days after I submitted the request to find it and get it to me.
So over all, the price I paid was $30/device. The monthly service is 15/month. I think that given the cost of the service, it is a little pricey, but compared to other devices that offer a similar price, it is fairly reasonable. However, the outages of the service seem to be about twice a month at least and the system stops working 1-2 days/week on average (some weeks it is fine and others it is out for several days). So if you force it to do a locate then it will or a continuous tracking then it will try. Basically the outage is per noticing the enter/exit of safety zones. Also the scheduled times are practically useless. They rarely happen when you request if they happen at all. With the latest perceived updates to their servers the scheduled checks have stopped and appear to be removed from the account. When they were working they at first happened after the scheduled time and not just 2 minutes after but more like 5-10 minutes after and then they changed to 8-4 minutes before the scheduled check. Now they just dont happen.
The device is styled like a large fob. As such it has a little spot to attach a cord/string. Well that partially broke as it doesnt seem very sturdy. I used glue to hold it in place and that is working reasonably well. The fob is a bit large but it helps in locating my keys since I attached it to them. I'd prefer something smaller, but since it uses the cellular network to communicate status, I suppose that the antenna is the reason for the size. The fob when you plug it into your computer via the included cable for charging keeps wanting to have you install software that doesnt exist. So remember to click the better that says not to do it again when you connect it in the future.
Given the technology that I perceive being used, $30 was about the right price. The monthly subscription after the first 30 days free could be more like $10/month especially since I already have ATT as my provided and it uses ATT for its cellular communication.
I signed up to receive emails and sms messages. The message and emails will arrive 10-30 minutes or more after it supposedly sends it as it associated a timestamp with each notification.
No, I would not recommend this to a friend.
0points
0out of 0found this review helpful.
Review 3 for Insignia™ Little Buddy Child Tracker (Green)

An item that does what it says

Customer Rating
5.0 out of 5
5.0
Posted by: AmyLG
from Portola Valley, CA
on 06/04/2010
Value for Price
5.0 out of 5
5.0
Ease of Use
5.0 out of 5
5.0
Durability
5.0 out of 5
5.0
Features
5.0 out of 5
5.0
What's great about it: Easy to set up, easy to use
What's not so great: Need a USB power adapter to charge if you are not around your computer
So far, so good. This device does exactly what it says. Very easy to set up and use. Very new to the item, but have not had any issues setting up and using safety zones or getting alerts. You will need a USB power adapter to charge if you are not near or around your computer -- I have one by Belkin that I use for my Iphone, Ipad and it works fine with this and for which I paid about $14.99.
I would recommend this to a friend!
0points
0out of 0found this review helpful.
Review 4 for Insignia™ Little Buddy Child Tracker (Green)

Not the best

Customer Rating
2.0 out of 5
2.0
Posted by: supercleaner7
from Denver, Colorado
on 03/06/2010
Value for Price
4.0 out of 5
4.0
Ease of Use
2.0 out of 5
2.0
Durability
1.0 out of 5
1.0
Features
1.0 out of 5
1.0
What's great about it: You can occasionally locate the children or item when it works
What's not so great: Not reliable
The device can only be charged with a USB cord and a computer. The device cannot always be located. Battery is good. Quality is not great as the area near the top has a tab that broke more than once. I had to exchange two of the devices after a week. All the features do not work. I cancelled service on 3 devices after two months when the units could only do a locate on occasion from the computer at home.
No, I would not recommend this to a friend.
+1point
1out of 1found this review helpful.
Review 5 for Insignia™ Little Buddy Child Tracker (Green)

Works well, Great price

Customer Rating
5.0 out of 5
5.0
Posted by: gambit16g
from Houston TX
on 01/20/2010
Value for Price
5.0 out of 5
5.0
Ease of Use
5.0 out of 5
5.0
Durability
5.0 out of 5
5.0
Features
4.0 out of 5
4.0
What's great about it: Gives good location on where the Little buddy is.
What's not so great: takes a while to refresh.
Comes with wrist strap that can be tied to your childs belt loop and put into pocket. Easy to use use over the net. Refreshing to locate takes longer than expected but gives very close results to where the little buddy is at.
I would recommend this to a friend!
+1point
1out of 1found this review helpful.
Review 6 for Insignia™ Little Buddy Child Tracker (Green)

Could be good, monthly fees are hidden

Customer Rating
1.0 out of 5
1.0
Posted by: Budstone
from Mesa, AZ
on 12/26/2009
Value for Price
1.0 out of 5
1.0
Ease of Use
1.0 out of 5
1.0
Durability
1.0 out of 5
1.0
Features
1.0 out of 5
1.0
What's great about it: Good idea, there are other providers out there that are straight.
What's not so great: No one knows the monthly fees, not employees, not on the website, not on the Insignia web site.
No one knows the monthly fees, not employees, not on the website, not on the Insignia web site. I called and spoke to Best Buy, they thought it was buy it and it would just work. There is a monthly service fee that goes with all real time tracking devices. This one is hidden. Some are $60/month... the higher the fee, the more it is hidden. There are $10/ month fees and lower available.
No, I would not recommend this to a friend.
+5points
11out of 17found this review helpful.
Review 7 for Insignia™ Little Buddy Child Tracker (Green)

Outstanding product for todays society

Customer Rating
5.0 out of 5
5.0
Posted by: xPapaSmurf911x
from Burlington, NC
on 11/23/2009
What's great about it: A wonderful, compact and feature rich device that is easy to setup and use.
What's not so great: A little large to be discreet, should come with a lanyard or belt clip
In a society with people preying on children, this device is well timed. Feature rich with safety zones, continous monitoring and will even alert you when the battery is low, I am more than satisfied with this product. So long as you have decent Sprint cellular service where you plan to implement this device, you will be pleased. I consistantly get location 'fixes' of less than 30 ft. in NC. If you want an extra ally in the fight against child preditors, this device is for you.
I would recommend this to a friend!
+2points
2out of 2found this review helpful.