Tag Archives: LightBug

LightBug is a solar-powered GPS tracker

LightBug takes the best features of a Bluetooth tag and combines them with the functionality of a full GPS/GPRS tracker.

While there are plenty of trackers available today, a vast majority of them rely on Bluetooth to detect the whereabouts of the device. However, once out of range, these trackers essentially serve very little purpose. That’s where LightBug is looking to come in handy.


No larger than a stick of gum, the LightBug is small enough to discreetly clip onto a keychain, bag, clothes, pets or anything else you don’t want to lose, and unlike others on the market, packs GPS capabilities. Meaning, in the event a Bluetooth connection is broken, you’ll still be able to pinpoint an object with an accuracy of 50cm. The gadget works by sending its location over any available mobile phone network via a roaming SIM. What’s more, the LightBug is solar powered, and can be charged through its microUSB port should it need a quick boost of juice.

Aside from everyday items, LightBug can also help parents keep tabs on wandering children or caregivers to monitor the elderly, particularly those suffering from dementia or Alzheimer’s. It can even be employed for fitness-related activities as it can be worn on your shoe and used to track your runs.

How it works is pretty simple. GPS satellites tell LightBug where it is. The GPRS network sends the location to the cloud, where the information is securely stored. This data is then relayed to LightBug’s accompanying app. The app allows you to manage push notifications, establish geofences, retrieve historical data, sound a buzzer and launch navigation.


Additionally, alerts can be setup for a wide range of things, such as proximity to your phone. Proximity alerts will detect if the unit is no longer nearby using Bluetooth and will trigger automatic position updates. Alternatively, you can draw areas on a map that are either “safe zones” or “danger zones” and receive notifications when boundaries are crossed. Other notification triggers include time of day, detection of a falls and speed.

“LightBug is like a Bluetooth proximity tag on steroids because it’s still useful when you’re not near it. Unlike other tags, it doesn’t rely on loads of people having the same app installed because it can determine and send its location on its own. Like Bluetooth Tags though, you can use the app to make the buzzer ring to help you find stuff, and also use your phone to home in on it, helping you find stuff quicker indoors,” the team writes.


Measuring just 45mm x 23.5mm x 11mm in size and weighing only 20g, the LightBug can be unnoticeably attached to anything from your bag to your drone. In terms of hardware, the device is equipped with an ATxmega128A4U MCU, an accelerometer for movement detection, a pair of solar panels and a microUSB port for charging, a LiPo battery, a piezo buzzer for alerts, an LED and an GSM/GPRS modem.

“Basically, LightBug integrates an old school mobile phone, solar panels, a solar charger, Bluetooth, a really, really good GPS and has amazing battery life,” its creators add.

Looking ahead, the team hopes to release a public API early next year, which will enable you to build apps around LightBug — whether that’s a location-based game for your pet or a scavenger hunt for you and your friends. Aside from that, they will be integrating the tracker with IFTTT.

Tired of losing things? Head over to its Kickstarter campaign, where LightBug is currently seeking $77,782. Delivery is expected to begin in January 2016.

21 smart crowdfunding campaigns you may want to back this week

Every Friday, we’re taking a look at some of the smartest, most innovative projects that caught our attention on Kickstarter and Indiegogo over the last seven days. 



This ring-sized computer analyzes your daily activities to help you sleep and perform better. ŌURA has already well surpassed its $100,000 goal on Kickstarter.



This A.I. platform is an open source alternative to Amazon Echo that allows you to play media, control lights and much more. Mycroft is currently seeking $99,000 on Kickstarter.

Fotokite Phi


This GoPro-carrying quadcopter can capture bird’s-eye view photos while being leashed to your wrist. Fotokite is currently seeking $300,000 on Indiegogo.



This standalone machine learning device can detect when your drone is about to crash and deploy a parachute. North UAV is currently seeking $12,000 on Kickstarter.



This solar-powered tracker lets you find nearly anything (or anyone) using GPS. LightBug is currently seeking $77,782 on Kickstarter.



This intelligent car battery will never need to be jumpstarted, works reliably on the coldest winter days, and lasts twice as long as the average lead-acid battery. Ohm is currently seeking $50,000 on Indiegogo.



This four-in-one machine allows you to laser cut, mill, etch and 3D print a wide range of materials. Zhuhai CTC Electronic Co. is currently seeking $35,000 on Kickstarter.



This futuristic head-up display provides hands-free access to maps, phone calls, text messages, notifications, music and on-board diagnostics for your car. Exploride is currently seeking $100,000 on Indiegogo.

OnCourse Goggles


This pair of point-and-click goggles allow athletes to stay on course, swim in a straight line in open water and receive real-time feedback. OnCourse Goggles is currently seeking $60,000 on Kickstarter.



This ultra-compact, Arduino-compatible board features an integrated stepper driver and 12-bit rotary encoder, enabling it to be mounted directly on the back of your Nema 17 motor. ON Development IVS is currently seeking $8,882 on Kickstarter.



This portable battery-powered gadget can illuminate your pool or hot tub for an awesome light show along with sound through its Bluetooth speakers. Andreas Haase is currently seeking $50,000 on Kickstarter.



This pair of super small, Bluetooth-enabled buds fit comfortably in your ear without a single cord and boasts a battery life of six hours. Pear Designs has already well surpassed its $50,000 goal on Kickstarter.

Trekz Titanium


This pair of wireless, open ear headphones offer runners, cyclists, hikers and other outdoor enthusiasts superior safety, comfort and high-quality sound through bone conduction technology. AfterShokz has already well surpassed its $65,000 goal on Indiegogo.



This Bluetooth tag clips and sticks onto anything you’d like to keep tabs on, all of which can easily be tracked right from your smartphone. Verti is currently seeking $10,000 on Indiegogo.



This voice messaging system is reinventing the answering machine by having you communicate with family and friends using an orb. Retropreneur Labs is currently seeking $75,000 on Kickstarter.

go-e ONwheel


This lightweight, add-on motor can transform your bike into an e-bike in a matter of seconds. Frank Fox has already well surpassed his goal of $55,253 on Kickstarter.



This smart appliance tracks, sorts and dispenses your pills whenever it’s time to take them. LITE is currently seeking $100,000 on Kickstarter.

Knut Water


This connected detector can sense water, temperature and humidity to protect your home from water damage. Amperic is currently seeking $50,000 on Kickstarter.



This standalone “like” button gives you the ability to express your adoration for anything and everything, while also collecting input and other forms of crowdsourced data. Luvit is currently seeking $25,000 on Kickstarter.



This smart home security kit is comprised of a central control unit, an HD camera, a motion sensor, a door/windows sensor, a smoke detector and an alarm trigger. iGia is currently seeking $10,000 on Indiegogo.



This highly-customizable, privacy-enhanced robot not only can serve as your personal companion, but can learn by doing, keep an eye on things, snap photos, receive weather and traffic reports, connect to household devices, and much more. Nxt Robotics is currently seeking $50,000 on Indiegogo.

If your project is powered by Atmel MCUs and you’ve been featured on our blog, be sure to download the respective badges here for use in your ongoing marketing efforts. 

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