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You are here: MacNN Forums > Hardware - Troubleshooting and Discussion > iPhone, iPad & iPod > Using a 3G as a Lojack

Using a 3G as a Lojack
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subego
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Nov 24, 2010, 01:07 PM
 
Heard this idea and thought it was niftyish.

Buy a used iPhone. Put it on a family plan. Plug it permanently in your car.

Using the Find My IPhone app, you have instant Lojack.


Any thoughts on where this idea breaks down? The one which occurs to me is that it could be problematic in a parking garage.
     
turtle777
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Nov 24, 2010, 01:44 PM
 
Reception might generally be a problem.
If you hide the iPhone, there will be (inevitably) a lot of metal around it.

-t
     
subego  (op)
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Nov 24, 2010, 01:50 PM
 
Not necessarily. How's about shooting power into the glovebox?

(You didn't bring up a bad point though)
     
turtle777
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Nov 24, 2010, 02:48 PM
 
Actually, I'd be concerned about the GPS part.

GPS requires a line of sight to the GPS satellites. If that doesn't exist, you fall back to triangulation, which will be far more inaccurate.

-t
     
subego  (op)
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Nov 24, 2010, 03:05 PM
 
Hmmm... Good point.

This makes it seem more swingable with an SUV, but rapidly approaching more trouble than it's worth. Not quite though. Having the UI would be lickable.
     
Cold Warrior
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Nov 24, 2010, 03:13 PM
 
Satellite signals are notoriously difficult to get without unobstructed line of sight to the skies. The only thing I can think of would be to hide it in the dashboard with the gps antenna exposed to one of the vents, that way it has a view through the vent and windshield for the gps signals. This may also make wiring easier to conceal and delay tampering.
     
Cold Warrior
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Nov 24, 2010, 03:16 PM
 
Also, if you were bad-ass at vehicle stuff, you might be able to rig a remote kill to the vehicle through the phone, or using the phone as a modem/network node into the vehicle. Not sure what sort of DIY stuff like that is out there.
     
Person Man
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Nov 24, 2010, 03:34 PM
 
Originally Posted by Cold Warrior View Post
...you might be able to rig a remote kill to the vehicle through the phone...
Be careful, though. You don't want to remote kill the car when it's being driven, because if anything happens to the thief or someone else not in the car gets hurt, you could be held liable.
     
Cold Warrior
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Nov 24, 2010, 03:56 PM
 
Very true. Tracking is the best option.
     
subego  (op)
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Nov 24, 2010, 04:26 PM
 
The person who presented this idea also said it would be neat if you could use your iPhone to change the fuel/air ratio. Which it would be. The response however was "kiss your insurance goodbye".
     
dbjork
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Nov 27, 2010, 01:15 AM
 
iPhone + family plan = less expensive than lojack?

know cheapest lojack is like 700$, but dunno how much is the monthly plan

interesting idea though
     
   
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