8 Most Common Questions You May Be Fooled About No Subscription Dog GPS Trackers

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Many dog parents are constantly on the lookout for dog trackers that don't rely on cell phone networks and don't require monthly fees or subscriptions. But tons of commercial websites give different advice and conclusions. Let's talk about some of the common ones that are easily fooled today.

1. Is there actually a reliable no subscription dog GPS tracker?

Yes, there are. There are Garmin, Aorkuler, PetFon, Dogtra and other brands on the market that are available with no subscription fee.

Technically speaking, the biggest difference between no subscription fee trackers and subscription fee trackers is the use of different communication methods. Trackers that require a subscription fee rely on cellular networks; trackers that don't require a subscription fee don't rely on cellular networks and communicate data through their own wireless communication technology.

The development of wireless communication technology is very fast and there are many types, for example, radio technology used in walkie-talkies, satellite communication, etc. do not rely on cellular networks and do not require subscription fees.

2. Why do most GPS trackers use cellular networks? Does it mean that trackers that require a subscription are better?

This is a very good question and the answer is very simple.

As a direct result of the rapid development of cellular phones, the dominant consumer electronic product of our time, the 4G module has become technologically mature and inexpensive.

And tracker manufacturers can avoid the challenges of innovation with Ali and the high investment required for research and development, they can easily and low-cost production of trackers.

All that is needed is to change the appearance and APP, and then it can be marketed and sold. This is the reason why a bunch of pet GPS tracker brands are different in appearance but homogenized in terms of features, advantages and disadvantages.

We can't simply say which tracker is better, each product has a place and user that suits him.

3. Is AirTag / SmartTag the cheapest no subscription dog GPS tracker?

No! AirTag and SmartTag, etc. are not GPS trackers and are not up to the task of pet tracking.

First of all, Airtag does not have GPS and cannot get the exact location of your dog via GPS;

secondly, Airtag is based on near-field communication and does not work properly beyond the Bluetooth range (which is usually a dozen to a few tens of meters). Our dog usually goes beyond the distance that Bluetooth can work. After all, we wouldn't need to track our dog if honestly he always stayed quiet and within the distance range of Bluetooth.

These tag-type products are mainly used for objects that are in close proximity and don't move automatically, such as keys that are often under the couch or table in the living room.

4. No subscription trackers are more expensive? can I save more by choosing a tracker that requires a subscription?

No, it doesn't.

First of all, although the purchase price of the product is lower, you need to pay a monthly fee to use the product; if you don't pay the monthly fee, the product is as useless as a plastic brick. It won't be as bad as I said? You're welcome to check out reviews of some of trackers in use in suburban or rural areas of the U.S. where there is no internet.

In addition, only a relatively small portion of the subscription fee you pay goes to the carrier, and a sizable portion becomes a hefty commission for the GPS manufacturer.

This is why it seems that the purchase price of the product is extremely low, because they don't care about the price of the product, they care about your subscription.

5. Accuracy of dog GPS tracker with a subscription is better; accuracy is worse without a subscription, right?

No. The accuracy of pet GPS tracker's itself depends on the accuracy of GPS, which is affected by GPS chip, antenna specification, environment and other factors. So in essence, there is no relationship between the positioning accuracy and the need of subscription fee.

However, in areas with good cell phone signal coverage, trackers that require a subscription can use the auxiliary positioning function of the operator's base station to improve positioning speed.

6. Subscription-based tracker is real-time tracking, while no subscription dog GPS tracker is not real-time tracking, right?

The answer is the opposite. 

1) Transmission path:

For trackers that require subscription fee, the flow of the dog's location information is as follows:

the tracker gets the GPS location information -1> the tracker transmits the information to the carrier network via 4G -2> the carrier network uploads the data to the manufacturer's data server -3> the user downloads the data from the server to his/her own cell phone via mobile network -4> the data is displayed through the APP. (4 steps)

For tracker without subscription fee, the flow of dog's location information is: the tracker gets GPS location information -1> the tracker transmits to the user's remote control terminal. (1 step)

b. Tracker transmission frequency:

For trackers that require a subscription fee, it is usually 2-60 minutes, and in LIVE mode, it is almost once every 3-5 seconds (but very power hungry). Trackers that do not require a subscription fee are usually transmitting every 1-5 seconds.

In addition, with trackers that require a subscription, the data transfer is also dependent on how good the 4G network is, and an unstable network affects the transfer speed even more.

So, who is the real real-time tracker? It's clear at a glance.

7. A subscription-based tracker with no distance limit, so you can find your dog wherever he goes?

This is a very tricky statement, such as "unlimited range" and " LTE provides the longest range of any cellular band and updates to your phone regardless of how far away you might be - even across the world! Our devices work in 150+ countries."

First of all, how many dogs make the great cross-country, cross-continental migration like migratory birds?  In almost the vast majority of cases we simply don't use the infinite range mentioned in the ad.

Second, after all, the United States is a huge country, 115 times the size of Austria, and carriers have to spend lots and lots of money to achieve perfect coverage. Currently cell phone network coverage in the US is not as good as it is in Austria or as one might think. And a tracker that requires a subscription is not going to cut it in this poor cell phone network. Read the link: SIM-based GPS Trackers: A Risky Choice for Rural and Suburban Dog Owners

For us, it makes more sense to talk about poor cell phone network coverage than about roaming around 150+ countries.

8. Do subscription trackers have a longer battery life?

Not sure. Currently subject to the size of the tracker, battery density, power consumption of electronic modules, etc., different manufacturers can only make adjustments to the power-saving algorithm layer by determining whether or not to connect to wifi and so on.

In addition to this, the battery life is more of a matter of usage habits, usage environment, and so on.



1 comment

  • Posted on by denne J

    There really isn’t much difference between the several brands in SIM-based trackers, and some of the dog activity data I wondered if it could be a bit more informative, rather than telling me something that’s optional. And of the trackers that aren’t network dependent, the Aorkuler is a great product (I can’t say it’s the best because I haven’t used any other brand). I’m wondering if the Aorkuler could be a good blend of both?

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