Kippy is an Android app that works with a companion tracker to be worn on your pet to make sure that you never lose them again. Available in a range of colors, Kippy attaches to your dog or cat's collar, and is durable enough to get wet, survive knocks and bumps and get covered in mud. The service uses GPS as well as LBS to triangulate around mobile phone towers if there's no signal to let you know where your pet is. With features like geofencing to be alerted when your dog gets out of its pen, or the cat strays too far, Kippy has all the right boxes ticked. Much more than just another pet tracker, Kippy is billed as the complete solution to your worries about losing your beloved pet ever again. This is going to be a look at both the tracker and how the Android app works.
First of all, you'll need to purchase a Kippy tracker. Now, these aren't necessarily very cheap, we'll be honest, but considering that they have all sorts of features inside of them, including a rugged build to make sure they stand the test of time. There's an included SIM card here to relay information back to your device, and you can check up on things whenever and wherever you are. To purchase your own, you can take a look at their website here.
Here's a look at the tracker when attached to a collar:
Here's a close up of the device on a collar, as you can see it is quite large, and I would have reservations about putting this on my cats. However, it's designed to be rugged and hard-wearing and it certainly feels that way.
Besides, Poppy looks perfectly happy enough, right?
So, now that we've got our little friend here all hooked up, we can attend to the Android app, which is freely available in the Play Store here. You'll need to sign up for a free account as well, of course.
You'll need to register your Kippy with the app, which is done by inputting the figures on the back of the device. You can then give your Kippy a name and a photo, to make this Kippy for one particular pet.
Now that I've got everything setup, I can try my hand at actually finding our where my friend's dog, Poppy actually is. The proximity sensor would have been nice if I could have gotten it to work, but with Poppy indoors the GPS doesn't seem to be working all that well, because when Kippy does work, it works really well.
You can change how often you want the GPS tracker to update, and it appears that you need to have a decent 2G or 3G signal nearby, something that I apparently lacked. GPS with Kippy flat out doesn't work indoors, which is a little disappointing, but when your pet is outdoors, you can effectively turn your smartphone into a pet compass:
The geofence feature is an interesting way of making sure your dog or cat doesn't stray too far from where you want them to go.
The geofence mode is nice and simple to put together, and all you need to do is create the area, and then once your pet - heaven forbid - actually breaks out of this predefined area, you'll be alerted to the fact. You can also use the History mode to either see where your nosey cat has been or to make sure that whomever you've asked to walk the dogs is actually doing what they say they would.
It's not just on Android that you can use Kippy however, as you can access Kippy - using your account - on all sorts of different platforms.
After trying out Kippy for myself, I can see why so many people have enjoyed the peace of mind that comes with being able to locate their pet and make sure that they don't run off or stray too far. I did however, come across some issues with my tracker, as I noted above, it was difficult for me to actually find out where Poppy was as it doesn't look like Kippy got a good signal to be able to be accurate, so it wasn't all that useful for me, at least when indoors. I think I am a one off however, and the Android app itself is fairly comprehensive and simple at the same time. Outdoors, I managed to get the tracker to work just fine, but at that point I was either walking the dog or knew a friend was. Which is the right balance to have, as people have to ultimately use these pieces of software. All of the features, like the geofencing and the history modes are nice and easy to access, and there's a whole lot on offer, that's for sure.
- Speed (4/5) - While I did experience a few crashes here and there, the app was mostly very quick, and I didn't have to wait long for the location to be reported to me.
- Features (5/5) - The whole package might be expensive for some, but it works, and works well. You do need to have a decent cellular signal however, so those really out in the countryside might not get quite as much out of it as others, but it has so much on offer that pet owners should take a look.
- Theme (4/5) - The app is easy to use on Android, and all of the key features are quickly explained and simple to get set up.
- Overall (4.5/5) - If the tracker wasn't quite so large (which is a requirement for the rugged qualities) then I could recommend it to more users, like cat owners, but for dog owners this is a great meld of hardware and software that works well.
- Tracker is rugged and built to last, it clearly won't break over some mud or knocks here and there.
- Android app is nice and easy to use, and doesn't expect its users to be rocket scientists or anything like that.
- Geofencing allows you to set up safeguards for your beloved pets to make sure that they don't stray too far or get out when they shouldn't do.
- History mode is nice for those with cats looking to see where they have gone and it can be an insight into how far you've walked the dogs and such.
- Altogether the tracker and subscription costs after the first year can be a little expensive.
- Tracker needs to have some sort of connection to a mobile network, without it it doesn't work well.
Overall, Kippy is an excellent platform that conscious pet owners should take a look at. The tracker is a comprehensive piece of hardware, it's hard-wearing and rugged, and the app gets the job done nicely. While I do think it's a little pricey, and the tracker is big for cats, it works wonderfully for dogs. If your friend has a habit of running off or a lot of space to itself, Kippy is a way of keeping tabs on them no matter where you are.