Innovation That Matters

GPS collar tag helps owners find lost pets

Work & Lifestyle

GPS technology is enabling all kinds of new products and services on mobile devices, so why not on “mobile” entities of the four-footed kind? Pets, that is—many of whom have a tendency to roam at least as much as the average cellphone user. Enter SpotLight, a new solution that uses GPS to help pet owners keep tabs on their little wanderers wherever they go. Similar in many ways to SNIF Labs’ RFID collar tag, which we covered last year, the SpotLight GPS Pet Locator from Positioning Animals Worldwide combines A-GPS tracking technology with dedicated 24/7 animal-recovery service from the American Kennel Club. Each device comes with a collar unit along with battery, charging cable and AKC tag. Pet owners begin by attaching the water-resistant, 2.5-oz. collar unit to their dog’s collar. They then visit SpotLight online to set “SafeSpots” for the dog, or areas such as the back yard where the dog is permitted to go. Then, any time the dog ventures outside those areas, an alert is sent to the owner via text message and/or email. Turn-by-turn driving directions courtesy of Google Maps are sent to guide the owner to within five yards of the dog’s continuously updated location; once the owner arrives, a bright LED beacon can be remotely turned on that’s visible from more than 100 yards away. If a compassionate passerby finds the dog, meanwhile, he or she can press a “rescue” button on the device to connect the lost pet with the owner and the AKC recovery team. Tracking history for each tag-wearing pet also gets saved so owners can see where they’ve gone. SpotLight works in T-Mobile’s U.S. coverage areas and is priced at USD 249.99. Service plans begin at USD 7.99 per month for up to 25 pet recoveries per year. U.S. pet owners alone spend some USD 45 billion annually on their fuzzy companions, according to Fast Company, but 10 million of those pets still went missing last year, SpotLight says. Time to bring GPS-based help to your part of the pet-loving world…? Spotted by: Fast Company



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