Pet trackers are becoming an increasingly common piece of technology to help keep your dog or cat from getting hopelessly lost. Tagg has had a GPS-enabled pet tracker in the market for a few years, but the company is ready to announce a revamped version. The new GPS Plus pet tracker looks like a slightly more elaborate dog collar, but using the companion smartphone app lets you see exactly where your pet is on a map as well as check out detailed information on your pet's level of activity for the day and over the course of a week. Data is transmitted back to your phone via Verizon's network, for which you'll have to pay a small, unspecified monthly service fee.
The updated version of Tagg's product adds another metric to monitor your pet's overall well-being — it can now alert you if your pet is experiencing unhealthy levels of heat or cold. The obvious example is if you have a dog sitting in a hot car; you'll now be notified when the temperatures are reaching dangerous levels. (I prefer just to not leave my dog in the car when it's hot, but I realize not everyone always has that option.) As for the battery, Tagg says it should last long enough that you only need to charge it a few times a month. Alongside the updated collar, Tagg will also release an updated smartphone app, which is a good thing — the older version that we checked out is still an iOS 6 version.
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In addition to the updated collar hardware, Tagg is also partnering with home monitoring company Alarm.com so that users can pull in data from their GPS Plus collar there. Additionally, once it's linked up, the home automation features that Alarm.com can control will respond to your pet's activity. For example, if your dog spends a lot of time outside during the day, your A/C system might not kick in — but when it comes inside, the Alarm.com home monitoring will notice and cool the house down for your pet.
It's not the most inexpensive solution out there — it'll be offered for $99.99 when it launches, with the price increasing to $119.99 after an introductory period. That said, most pet owners would probably value the ability to keep tabs on their companions far more than 100 bucks. Tagg is far from the only company trying to crack this market open, but it appears to be a pretty comprehensive option.