Zomm wireless leash hands on

Zomm is, according to its makers at least, "the world's first wireless leash for mobile phones".

Those makers being husband and wife team Henry and Laurie Penix, who came up with the idea after Laurie kept leaving her phone indoors when she left the house. The name comes from the names of the Penix's children Zack, Olivia and Madison, with the other M coming from Mum. Poor old Henry doesn't get a look in.

If you've heard of Zomm then that's because it caused a bit of a fuss at CES at the start of the year, when it took the Best Innovation award at the show.

And, although it's taken a while, the device has finally landed on British shores, and Pocket-lint has got up close and personal with it to see what it's all about.

Zomm is really three devices in one. It's a Bluetooth alarm keyring, it's a Bluetooth speakerphone and it's also a personal safety device.

Henry told Pocket-lint: "If you consider those three use cases, we think that it offers at least one use for everybody".

Starting with the first aspect, after pairing your Zomm up with your Bluetooth enabled phone, you can set your device to have a long or short leash (9 to 20m) and then you'll receive warnings if your phone goes out of reach.

So if you have the Zomm attached to your keys and you go to leave the house, you'll be notified. First you'll get a vibration, then a flashing of the lights and finally an alarm if you still don't respond. You can switch the warnings off at any time by simply pushing the Z button.

The speaker-phone aspect works just as you'd expect. Again, you'll get the vibration and the flashing, along with a ringtone (you can turn this on or off using the Zomm software), and there's a built in noise-cancelling microphone on board too. The one button control works just like regular Bluetooth headsets, with one push to answer, two for voicemail and so on.

The final feature is the personal safety aspect, which we thought was the most impressive. If you hold down the Z button for 9 seconds you can sound a pretty booming alarm to warn people you're in trouble, but if you hold it down for a further three seconds you can actually place an emergency call.

You can set this up to call the emergency services, or you can add your own specific emergency number. You can then talk as normal, or you can set it up to play a recorded message. For added safety the line will also stay open until you cancel the call on your phone.

Its lithium battery is chargeable through a micro-USB port, with a full charge (4 hours the first time, less than this thereon-in) giving you around 3 days of standy, with around 2 hours of talktime.

It's a smart device, that packs in a lot of features in a handy sized little casing. It's easy to set up, easy to use and the one button control means that even the biggest technophobe should have no issues dealing with it.

Zomm will be hitting UK stores soon, in the meantime you can order directly from Zomm.com priced at £79.99. We've also had word that Firebox will be selling the Zomm for £69.99, with shipping beginning on 15 December.