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A clever new analog clock doesn’t tell time — it tells you people’s location

Eta Clock Kickstarter Video

Based on its time zone, a regular clock can give you some idea of where in the world you are, narrowed down to the nearest 1,000 miles. What most of them can’t do is to tell you where your loved ones are. That is something a new Kickstarter product called the Eta Clock plans to set straight.

Much like the Weasley family’s magic clock from the Harry Potter series, the Eta Clock moves its hands to reveal where people are, using icons instead of hourly numerals. Each colored hand represents a person you care about, while each segment of the clock face corresponds to a destination. As people move around through the day, an Eta app on their phones sends geolocation coordinates to a secure server, which then relays these coordinate to the Eta Clock device to adjust its hands. (The only slight issue is that the clock doesn’t also tell the time.)

“The idea for the Eta Clock started two years ago when we wanted a way for our parents to feel connected to our lives without sacrificing our privacy,” co-founder Kristie D’Ambrosio-Correll, a Massachusetts Institute of Technology alumna, told Digital Trends. “For my parent’s 35th wedding anniversary we decided the perfect gift would be a device that gives them peace-of-mind; something that keeps them connected to their adult children without requiring invasive tracking. The Eta Clock concept was born! As we spent the next year building the clock and honing our design, we realized that there were many people who wanted a similar device, sparking us to launch our first Kickstarter campaign.”

It’s definitely an innovative idea and, while certainly not a replacement for your regular timepiece, it is a fun concept that’s likely to appeal to a variety of customers.

“We had envisioned our target customer as a tech-friendly family: A family who wants to stay connected but maintain a sense of independence,” D’Ambrosio-Correll continued. “However, since building the Eta Clock, we have found that this product is perfect for so many situations. Most uniquely, we have had requests from large and small companies alike asking for a version that displays where their key employees are located by time zone or office. We could even envision the Eta Clock being perfect for roommates, living communities, sororities, and fraternities.”

If you want to join the Eta revolution, you can currently pre-order your own clock on Kickstarter. Prices start at $350, with the clock shipping in your choice of oak or walnut wood finishes. Delivery should take place next July.

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Luke Dormehl
I'm a UK-based tech writer covering Cool Tech at Digital Trends. I've also written for Fast Company, Wired, the Guardian…
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