A new product is about to hit the market that promises to put an end to the pocket patdown most people perform every five minutes. Ty is a small Bluetooth-enabled disc that attaches to objects like wallets, keys, and thumb drives, and maintains a constant connection to a user’s smartphone thanks to a proprietary app. If the app senses that one of its discs has strayed farther than a preset distance from the phone (for a predetermined amount of time, if desired), the handset immediately alerts its owner. Even better, the discs contain their own alert systems, allowing your keys to notify you if you left your phone in the car.
Expected to launch at CES 2011 next month, the Ty system — from a company by the same name — has already been named an honoree for the Innovations awards given to certain products at the show. Apparently the company, which received a patent for the invention earlier this year, once went by (and is still incorporated under) the name CellWitch, and had a similar product in the works — one that never seems to have made it to market. Hopefully Ty will not suffer the same fate, as the usage scenarios for these little discs and their accessories (keychains, caribiners, necklaces, paperclips, etc, etc) are nearly endless.