Whistle 3 pet tracker goes to the (smaller) dogs at CES 2017

Whistle 3 drops 50 percent of its predecessor's bulk and bolsters its tracking accuracy.

Lori Grunin Senior Editor / Advice
I've been reviewing hardware and software, devising testing methodology and handed out buying advice for what seems like forever; I'm currently absorbed by computers and gaming hardware, but previously spent many years concentrating on cameras. I've also volunteered with a cat rescue for over 15 years doing adoptions, designing marketing materials, managing volunteers and, of course, photographing cats.
Expertise Photography, PCs and laptops, gaming and gaming accessories
Lori Grunin

Helicopter pet parenting seems to be all the rage these days as smart trackers don't just let you locate your free-range Fido, but also micromanage his activity and make sure your dog walker isn't sipping a latte in an outdoor cafe somewhere.

The biggest issue with trackers is that many of them are huge, rendering them unsuitable for most cats and NYC apartment-size dogs. So now that the Whistle 3's shed half the bulk of its 1.5 by 4.2 by 0.8-inch (38 by 107 by 20 mm) precursor and it's able to slide it onto a standard collar, that could make a big difference.

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To increase the accuracy of its tracking -- and reduce the notification lag that some have complained about -- the company added support for pretty much every network technology that can be used to pull a location. In this case it adds Wi-Fi and Bluetooth to existing 3G cell and GPS. You'll also be able to create multiple custom geofenced locations, places where it doesn't need to track, up from the single location of before. That's part of the completely overhauled app.

Whistle 3 is shipping in January for $80 (about £65 or AU$110). That price doesn't include a mandatory subscription that includes cellular data service managed by Whistle, which ranges from approximately $7 to $10 (£6 to £8 or AU$10 to AU$15) a month -- per pet.