Last Updated on March, 2023
You’re legally bound to microchip your dog if you’re from the USA, UK, or New Zealand.
But when your dog goes missing for three days straight makes you wish if pet trackers were a legal obligation too. The saddest fact is that my dog, Rocket, was not so far from home; he just couldn’t find his way back.
The following day, after finding him, I looked up a reliable pet tracking system.
Marco Polo, featured here, seemed like the right pet tracker for me initially.
If you’re on the fence about buying this tracking tag, be sure to read everything so you know it fulfills your needs.
Eureka Technology company’s Marco Polo pet monitoring device works anywhere in the world with no monthly subscriptions because the tracker works free of cellular networks. With live tracking and geofences (alerts included), the product works fine. Its highest battery life is up to 6 weeks and comes with an IP67 waterproof rating.
The Not So Good
The Marco Polo tracker doesn’t give you the exact location of your dog, just the direction. You also can’t do the tracking by using a mobile app; you must have its own handheld locator. Activity tracking is absent, and the location range heavily depends on the environment. On top of all that, the user interface is complicated looking.
The Bottom Line
I can’t recommend you the Marco Polo pet monitoring device. Even in its best-case scenario, the device can’t give you the exact location of a lost dog and has a separate handheld device. All these pet monitoring troubles are fixed with the Fi Series 2 GPS tracker that delivers everything you’d expect from a dog tracker — read more about it at the end.
Table of Contents
- The Company Behind Marco Polo
- Glimpse of the Marco Polo Tracking Tag
- What is in the Package?
- How Does the Marco Polo Pet Tracker Works?
- All the Features of the Marco Polo Pet Trackers
- Price and Where to Buy From
- Pros and Cons
- Customer Reviews
- Who is This Tracking Tag for?
- Marco Polo Pet Tracker — Was it Worth it?
- My Recommendation (What I Chose): Fi Series 2
- In Conclusion
The Company Behind Marco Polo
I’m a person who looks for brand value in electronic items.
Why? These companies don’t want the “not worth it” label. They want to deliver the best quality.
So, it was a relief to know the company, Eureka technology partners is a California based company.
They have tracking products mainly for pets and drones.
But don’t worry — the Marco Polo pet tracking system is different from the drone tracker.
Let’s take a look at the Marco polo tracking device.
Glimpse of the Marco Polo Tracking Tag
The Marco Polo tracker’s design is based on none other than the Marco Polo game we all know. But instead of yelling out Marco and Polo, the tag uses Radio signals to do the tracking.
It’s designed specifically for active pets with multiple modes as the search mode, track mode, etc. The material is quite resilient too.
One key feature of the tracker is the disconnection from GPS. That’s right; it doesn’t use GPS, which makes it work without a subscription plan.
It works by using radio frequency signals. The tracker works with its own handheld pet locator.
Why don’t I tell you more about the tracker under the features?
What is in the Package?
- Handheld locator x 1
- Advanced Pet Tracking tag x 1
- Ballistic nylon holder x 1
- Plug-in charger x1 and cable x1
(Used for locator and tag recharging. )
Note: Additional chargers and cables may be purchased separately.
- User reference manual
- Quick start guide
- Pet button ID labels x 10
How Does the Marco Polo Pet Tracker Works?
We all know that Marco Polo is a two-way game. The same theory applies to the Marco Polo pet tracking technology.
The handheld Marco Polo locator sends a signal to the “tag” every 5 seconds. This happens when in the track mode.
When the “tracking tag” receives the signal, it sends the signal back.
The screen will then show the two critical information about the location on the locator’s screen,
- The signal strength
- The direction of the signal
So, when you get closer, walking in the direction, the signal’s strength will rise.
Eventually, you can find your furry friend causing trouble.
All the Features of the Marco Polo Pet Trackers
Design and Dimensions
I’m not going to lie; Marco Polo’s locator does feel a bit from the 2000s.
But the material feels relatively light and resilient. The buttons are well-spaced, and the extending surface edges make it easier to view the screen.
On the other hand, the tracking tags look pretty modern since they’re protected by a durable nylon holder.
The design is done to fit the smallest and largest dogs. It even fits cats having a collar length of 7 inches and more.
Here are the locator’s physical specs:
- Height: 6 in. (152 mm)
- Width: 3.5 in. (90 mm)
- Depth: 1.75 in. (44 mm)
- Weight: 7.8 oz. (221 g)
And here are the Marco Polo tracking tag specifications:
- Height: 1.0 in. (25.4 mm)
- Width: 5.0 in. (127 mm)
- Depth: 0.5 in. (12.7 mm)
- Weight: 0.8 oz. (22.7 g)
Rocket is a medium-sized Beagle, and the tag fits pretty comfortably. The locator isn’t too big either.
Tracking Range and Updating Frequency
I told you that the Marco Polo tracking system works without cellular service.
This disconnection comes with some restrictions, as per the theory.
These restrictions can only be sorted with maximum range conditions; I expect the range to be at least 1km or 0.6 miles.
Marco Polo is not so bad there. Here’s how the range varies:
- Open terrain with few obstructions: up to 2 miles
- Open terrain but in rolling hills with few obstructions: 1 mile
- Urban areas: 2000ft
As for the updating frequency, as mentioned earlier, it is 5 seconds on average.
In case you’re wondering, there are no actual real-time live trackers. The closest you’d get is 2-2.5 seconds of frequency.
If you were to buy an actual real-time live tracker, it would cost you a lot.
- Does the Marco Polo Pet Tracking system have international coverage?
It does! The disconnection of the tracker from the cellular network has enabled this ability.
You can use the Marco Polo pet tracker wherever you go.
But this is not the same as worldwide coverage. Trackers with worldwide coverage let you view your pet’s location even if you and the pet are on two ends of the world.
Track Multiple Pets
Although I have only one dog, I know there are dog owners with multiple pets, even indoor cats.
If you’re one of them, the Marco Polo pet tracker brings good news.
You can add up to 3 additional tracking tags, which means pets, to the system.
There’s no installation procedure or anything like that. You can simply turn the collar on and press tracking button on the relevant tag to see the direction and the signal’s strength.
Precision and Accuracy
The most important functional feature of a pet monitoring or tracking system is to show the location of the pet. All the other trackers I have owned in the past has delivered that.
However, the Marco Polo locator unit doesn’t show the exact location of your dog on a map; it only leads you to the location via directions and signal strength.
That’s how radio frequency trackers work.
So, as you get closer to the dog, the signal on the pet tracking device increases. The reason is the dependence on radio frequency.
According to my trial, it’s extremely accurate, up to a few inches.
Extendable Battery Life
Some trackers drain after 24 hours, or even a day or two, whether you use the tracker or not.
But Marco Polo pet tracking system does not belong to that type.
There are two operational modes such as monitor mode and tracking mode.
The tag’s battery life will stay up to 6 weeks in the monitor mode.
However, in the active tracking mode, a full charge of the pet tracking device will run only for up to 3 days.
The active tracking mode would require only a lost pet; you’re tracking until you find him.
If your pet is out of range, you can place the locator in search mode and walk or drive around the area where your pet was last seen. Once you come close enough, the locator will beep and display your pet’s whereabouts, like a personal radar system.
All it takes is one single button to enable single button tracking for all of these.
If the locator is not tracking or monitoring, or if the dog is out of range, the collar tag can run up to 15 days on one charge.
That’s tremendously helpful for pet dog rescue groups.
The bottom line is that the system comes with an extendable battery life.
Typical dogs, and cats, live adventurous lives. You’re actively looking for a tracker just because you know they can even be lost.
The Marco Polo pet tracking device meets the IP67 waterproof requirements. The tag will be perfectly fine under up to 3 ft of water for up to 30 minutes.
But the rule of thumb with GPS pet trackers is to NEVER let the dogs swim with the tracker on.
Geofencing and Alerts
The Marco Polo pet tracking system has a static and dynamic geofencing system.
However, since the pet tracking system is disconnected from cell coverage, you can’t draw these geofencing zones on a map.
So, the radial zone is mapped considering the locator’s position as the center. You can choose one from 4 ranges whose smallest range is 50 ft of radius in the Marco polo pet tracking system.
You’ll get an alert when a pet leaves and stays out of the zone for 60 seconds. Even in the worst-case scenario, the alarming frequency would only go up to 80 seconds.
This safe zone moves with you due to relative positioning. That dynamic nature brings extra value to the geofencing technology of Marco Polo.
- Can you get phone notifications?
Yes, you can. But that requires the Marco Polo phone dialler, which should be bought separately.
When this feature is attached to the device, your phone number of choice will get a voice recording when your pet has left the safe zone for more than 60-80 seconds.
You can read more about it here.
Price and Where to Buy From
The price of the Marco Polo tracking system is $274.95.
If you were going to get it, the best place to buy it is from their official website.
But the company also has an Amazon profile to ship to other countries except for the USA and Canada.
Pros and Cons
Sirius points out some of the fundamental flaws that reduce the true value of the tracker.
As mentioned above, you don’t get the exact location of the dog. That flaw is pinpointed in this review.
Who is This Tracking Tag for?
The Marco Polo pet tracking tag responds perfectly in rural areas where location tracking and tracking systems are unfamiliar with little or no cell coverage.
The Marco Polo tracker is helpful for professional performance animal trainers. After all, the lack of monthly subscription or service fees should be handy for them.
But I don’t think it suits the everyday pet owners who want to track their dogs; the ones who expect quick alerts when their pet wanders off the safe zones.
Marco Polo Pet Tracker — Was it Worth it?
My conclusion is that the Marco Polo Pet tracking IS not terrible but is not for everyone.
Would you want to carry the Marco Polo locator to work or every time you go out for a walk with your dog?
I know I don’t.
On top of that, you should buy supportive Marco Polo devices to enable some essential operations. Connectivity to phones via the phone dialler is one such good example.
If you’re someone like me who wants to just track your dog with the most minor trouble, the Marco Polo is not the tracker for us.
My Recommendation (What I Chose): Fi Series 2
I had no choice but to return the Marco Polo tracker. But I still needed a permanent dog tracker for Rocket.
After evaluating several options, I finally landed on a powerful tracking solution; Fi Series 2 pet tracker.
Guess what… that’s the one I’m currently using for Rocket.
But what made the Fi Series 2 so much better?
Allow me to explain it quickly.
The Fi Series 2 is an IP68 waterproof rated GPS tracker, which is also chew-proof and dust resistant.
It comes in four colors; yellow, gray, blue, and pink; my choice was yellow because it makes it even easier to spot the pet’s collar.
Its end-to-end metal framing has made the collar withstand 300lbs of pull force. That resolves several occasions when the collar would tear off.
There’s also an LED attached to the collar. You can pick the color of the light.
It makes it so much easier to find the dog in the dark without using the App.
Unlike the Marco Polo collar, the Fi pet’s collar comes in 4 distinct sizes.
That makes this pet’s collar suitable for a wide range of dogs.
- Small: 11.5 – 13.5 inches of neck
- Medium: 13.5 -16.5 inches
- Large: 16 – 22.5 inches
- Extra large: 22 – 34.5 inches
The Fi Series 2 has a long battery life of up to 3 months.
The Marco Polo Pet pet tracking device is disconnected from external services (GPS and internet connection). It relies on 2-way radio frequency signals — that’s not BENEFICIAL for you.
Fi Series 2 uses GPS, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and LTE-M tracking technologies for location tracking. Bluetooth signals give you accuracy up to 7 feet with open skies. GPS enables a total range of 10 square miles.
One downside of the Marco Polo is the lack of a Smartphone app for operation.
The Fi Series 2 has one, and it works in both Android and Apple devices smoothly.
You’ll find the following features in the app:
- The live mode
- Social media network for Fi Series 2 users
- Ranking of the dogs wearing the collar
- Pet monitoring regarding the activity of the pet
- Finally, there’s your account with your and your dog’s details.
The Fi collar allows you to add as many users as possible to the account. That allows the added users to view what they see on the app screen. Now imagine one of the users being your vet. How convenient would it be for you and your dog?
Beagles can be smaller than my Rocket, and the smaller the dog gets, the higher the risk of getting diseases; it’s scientifically proven. So, to prevent all these issues, the Fi Series 2 lets you track the activity of the pet in terms of the number of steps taken and even the sleeping frequency.
In addition, the Fi Series 2 has the geofencing system. Why so?
- Fi Series 2 lets you draw the geofences anywhere on the map
The Marco Polo tracker doesn’t let you draw the map; there’s only a radial geofence making the locator as the center.
- Alert time of Fi Series 2 geofence is under 2-3 seconds
In comparison, Marco Polo’s alert time takes 60-80 seconds.
Within that period of time, a lot can happen.
Price of the Fi Series 2 Collar
The Fi Series 2 collar is $149 and comes with a 30-day trial period for the subscription (remember, you can still use the collar without it).
The current monthly fees plan is $8.25 and the yearly subscription is $99.
Other Pet Tracker Reviews:
The Marco Polo tracker is not terrible; after all, it brings a lot of features. But the question is how useful these features really are. In my opinion, their target audience is mainly dog trainers and kennel owners.
On the other hand, the Fi series is one of the best dog trackers that fit the general public like you and me. Unlike other GPS trackers, the Fi collar ticks all the boxes of features that are actually useful.
That’s why the Fi Series 2 collar has become one of the best pet trackers.
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