PinPoint Technologies, Inc. is a smartwatch start-up based out of Detroit, Michigan, that has made it a goal to help the autism community. It was founded by its chief operating officer, Quincy Hyatt, a Detroit native. Quincy, who has a sister with special needs, knows all too well what families affected by autism experience every day. Like some families affected by autism, Quincy and the Hyatt family endured many distressing incidents when his sister wandered way, sometimes for long periods of time.
After experiencing these episodes one too many times, Quincy developed his own solution. He set out to make sure that no other family went through the same thing.
In 2010, Quincy assembled a team and later secured patents for a wearable phone and GPS locating device that offers exclusive safety features. Given Quincy’s experience and his connection with the autism community, the PinPoint team dedicated a significant amount of time and resources to develop a product that would be useful to the autism community.
Unlike other companies, PinPoint didn’t want to simply create a “tracking device.” PinPoint wanted to help members of the autism community keep their loved ones safe without it becoming burdensome to parents or children. While creating the PinPoint GPS-Phone SmartWatch, PinPoint kept one thing in mind: that everyone is equal whether they’re on the autism spectrum or not. Even though the PinPoint GPS-Phone SmartWatch is equipped with special features that are useful for the autism community, the device still has basic features that all families would find useful for their loved ones.
PinPoint understands the high level of concern that the autism community has when it comes to monitoring a person’s whereabouts. One thing that PinPoint learned from its research and conversations with members of the autism community is the importance of being able to locate the person wearing the device, and the PinPoint GPS-Phone SmartWatch communicates directly with satellites. The benefit of this feature means that the person monitoring the location from their smartphone doesn’t have to worry about being within range.
A popular question asked during the development of the device was, “What if the person wearing the watch doesn’t know how to make a phone call on a regular phone, let alone a smartwatch?” While developing the device, PinPoint took various scenarios into consideration including this one. For that reason, PinPoint added a feature by which the person monitoring the device through the smartphone app can command the watch to call his/her phone. After receiving the call from the watch, the person using the smartphone just has to answer like any other phone call. He/she will then be able to communicate with the individual wearing the device.
Since the development of this device, PinPoint Technologies has received outpouring support from individuals in the autism community. Quincy’s cousin, a special education teacher in West Virginia, praised the product as she believes that the device could be helpful to the autism community. The company is committed to helping raise awareness for autism and will also be active in the community and attend events to help promote the cause.
PinPoint Technologies continues to be dedicated to creating devices that allow families to stay connected to those they care about most. The PinPoint GPS-Phone SmartWatch comes equipped with many wonderful features, but what is most important is its usefulness and functionality. PinPoint Technologies understands caring for someone with special needs isn’t always an easy task and wants nothing more than to help make caring for an autistic loved one a bit easier.
Savannah Bowen graduated from Greensboro College with a major in English and minor in creative writing. She obtained a 4.0 GPA and a Magna Cum Laude status at graduation, making the Dean’s List every semester. Savannah was inducted into the English Honor Society, Sigma Tau Delta, in 2016 and received the Collegian Excellence Award and the Excellence in English Award in 2017.
Clifford Waddell is the head of marketing and business development for PinPoint Technologies. Clifford is a Charlotte, NC, native and 2015 graduate of the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. He graduated with a BS in entrepreneurship. Clifford has always been an advocate for small businesses and startups. Clifford joined PinPoint Technologies in 2014 after visiting his cousin, Quincy, in Detroit. The idea of developing a product that served a need and not be stigmatized had peaked his interest. Since joining PinPoint Technologies, Clifford has become more of an advocate for autism awareness and child safety. Clifford felt that with his youth, energy, and knowledge of marketing he could help mold PinPoint into something great.
This article was featured in Issue 65 – Back-To-School Transitions