The “Internet of Things” has made it easy to keep track of lots of things, from where you parked your car to where you left your phone. And now Whistle, the San Francisco startup that’s become known in recent months for its somewhat silly sounding (but apparently quite handy) “FitBit for dogs” gadget, announced today that it’s adding some key new features to the newest generation of its on-collar device to make it so that you never lose track of your pooch.
The new product, dubbed WhistleGPS, uses both GPS and sub-GHz cellular technology to add on-demand location monitoring to Whistle’s flagship activity tracking gadget that syncs with iOS or Android devices. It’s a logical addition, as Whistle’s core product seems best suited for pet owners who aren’t always physically with their dogs while they’re out and about — people with big properties, or who use dog sitters or walkers, for instance.
The gadget, which is on presale now, will cost $129 and charge a $5 per month GPS service fee. While pet GPS trackers are not exactly new, the company is touting WhistleGPS as having the smallest form factor and longest battery life of all the pet trackers on the market. According to Whistle, some 10 million pets are lost every year, so the potential impact here is pretty sizable.
TechCrunch TV producer Felicia Williams, who is a proud pet owner herself, sat down with Whistle’s co-founder Ben Jacobs to see the new device in person and find out more about what it does. Check that out in the video embedded above.