Today I thoroughly broke the warranty of my first goTenna, if it was not already roadkill after running over it with the Land Cruiser a couple of days back in a fit of old age stupidity. It had been somewhat flaky since the accident. Bump the case and it might be fine or it might start generating random weirdness. It was clear the power button was somehow involved, a others had noticed its vulnerability to violence over and above what it was designed to take in terms of abuse.
Uncertainty about my device’s status led me to tear mine down in a repair attempt, which was semi-successful in that I have a working goTenna, but it’s not pretty. Once husked out of its shell, though, it’s a surprisingly svelte package. A previous disappointing experiment in tracking one of our cats with a product similar to Tile got me thinking about the generally positive user experience, much better integrated maps, and considerably greater range that the goTenna provides its human users.
Could something based on goTenna technology become somewthing like a “ComeBackCollar”?
Once auto-tracking and reporting is enabled, you’d be able to track your critters as they wander about or, in the case of our cat, Wally, figure out where he’s ditched that new collar we just bought him.
Right now, if your dogs are big enough to get off the porch, they could certainly pack a goTenna attached to their old school collar. For smaller dogs and cats, some additional streamlining in the next generation is needed. But the basic package is small enough to fashion into a collar form-factor without too much more shrinkage. This may not be the sort of thing that goTenna may do, but it may fit into the larger scheme of its licensing the underlying software and intellectual property for similar purposes. And the pet market is HUGE in terms of dollars, so its income could become the tail that wags the goTenna Mesh dog.
On the other hand, this might already be goTenna’s Top Secret “Pet Project” Z. Shhhh!