Dog Pedometers? Hi-Tech Collar-Monitor Measures Canine Fitness
While human canine owners clamor to fitness centers to whittle down and pump up, we will no longer have to worry about whether our dog is also getting enough exercise. A new hi-tech cloud-integrated pedometer by Fujitsu, called a “Wandant,” promises to monitor our dog’s exercise patterns, weight and health from a little box attached to the pooch’s collar.
The name “Wandant,” is derived from a combination of the colloquial Japanese word for a dog's bark, "wan wan," (which in English would be "woof woof") and the English word “pendant”. The device uses a three-axis accelerometer to log every step taken by your dog. It even records the dog's shivering motions and body temperature changes.
This little blue box can fit comfortably on even a small dog’s collar. A Wandant measures only 1.8 x 1.1 x 0.5 inches and weighs around 0.2 ounces, so most pooches probably won’t even notice that their every move is being recorded in cyberspace.
Without getting too technical, the transfer of the recorded data is made by simply holding your NFC-enabled phone near the Wandant to initiate the transfer. That data is then sent to the cloud and presented as graphic statistics that the owner can review on a daily basis on a website via desktop computer or on a special mobile site for Android handsets.
“Battery-life should be good for around four months, and there’s enough on-board storage to log up to 14 days worth of data,” Adam Williams writes in Gizmag.
So, the good news is that we can now tell whether the dog walker is actually walking our dog. The bad news is that so far the Wandant is available in Japan only.
The purchase price for the Wandant has not yet been announced. However, Fujitsu did state that one year’s subscription to the cloud service is included with purchase, and after the initial grace period which hooks us on daily doggie data to share on Facebook, it will only cost about $5 (American money) to subscribe.
Fujitsu believes the Wandant is the first automatic pedometer designed specifically for dogs. But it probably is just the start, as more and more dogs are becoming family members (and couch potatoes) worldwide.