September 10, 2006 Get set for a whole new level of communication with your pet thanks to this remarkable new device, and consider the potential for keeping track of your child. The Hear Now is a new type of communication product for tracking, geo-fencing, lighting up and even communicating with your cat or dog – its attributes are also useful with horses and humans. Companies already track their roadgoing fleets and key assets using GPS but the cost and miniaturisation for this technology now has reached the point where the average person can cost-efficiently track the whereabouts of their pets and loved ones. Location-based GPS tracking services usually employ commercial wireless networks to transmit their position but the Hear Now uses a two-way radio system to transmit the information so there are no ongoing fees. It can track your canine on a map on the handheld up to 12 miles away, and you can also turn on LED lights so you can see him in the dark, and there’s even a call home button that strangers can push to alert you should they find your dog in distress. The first version of the Hear Now will cost US$200 and be available four weeks from now - it does not have the geo-fence or GPS capabilities yet. The company is seeking international distributors.
The same collar can be used to geo-fence your pet in a localized area and you can initiate voice communications with your dog at all times, or sound the dinner gong from his collar. It’s also ideal for dog handlers in Police and Military and any other special task units as it can plot the path of a tracker dog and significantly enhances the dog’s safety in a dangerous environment. It gives the handler voice contact with the dog at all times, and in a search, security and military operations it can ensure 100 percent area coverage as the paths of a team of dogs and/or humans can be tracked and overlayed on the handheld and the results are savable as evidence.
The tracking system consists of a mobile unit attached to the dog and a monitoring unit, to display the position of the dog on a map. The system is based on a Global Positioning System (GPS) satellite technology and provides the two-way radio system transmits the information. It’s a very cost-efficient real-time tracking system for the man in the street and it fits into a package with a size and weight so that it will not inconvenience a cat.
This creates a highly distributed, robust, and reliable communications system. It offers the wide area coverage and mobile communications capabilities found in cellular systems, while providing far greater data rates and redundancy. And the only cost to run it is batteries as there are no high, monthly, carrier access charges.