I always learn a lot when doing research for these news articles. Today I learned that I have been using the Near Field Communication (NFC) feature on my smartphone, which doesn’t sound very exciting, but considering I didn’t even know what NFC was, it’s pretty interesting. I found out this useful tidbit of knowledge after I discovered Skoubee. Skoubee is the newest way to keep track of your pet, manage his medical information, and give him a social status without evening having to download an app.
So, NFC is a protocol where there is a wireless conversation between an NFC compatible tablet or smartphone (Sony, HTC, Samsung, Nokia, Blackberry, or LG) and a Skoubee medal or other compatible device. What is a Skoubee medal you ask? It looks like an ordinary dog tag, but there is a QR code embedded in it. A QR code is kind of like a barcode that can be read by compatible devices, except it can hold a lot more information than a barcode, including URL information.
The QR codes that are embedded on Skoubee medals can be used to access a pet’s profile, which is posted on the company’s website. Any dog owner who purchases a Skoubee medal for their pet can log onto the website and create a profile for their dog. If the animal is lost, anyone with a compatible cell phone can scan the tag and it will immediately bring up the dog’s online profile.
The profile includes all pertinent information like the dog’s name and the contact information for his family, but it also includes information that will be beneficial for the finder to know such as any health conditions, the animals regular veterinarians contact information, and any special dietary needs he may have. That alone is a huge benefit!
One of our dogs has a heart condition and she needs to take anti-arrhythmic medication five times a day. If she doesn’t get her pills on time it could kill her. If she had a Skoubee medal and she were ever to run away, the person that found her would instantly know about her condition and could take her to a vet’s office for care until they could reach us.
You can also record all of your pet’s health records on the online system. Instead of needing to download a special app to reach the information, anyone with a smartphone, tablet, or computer could access the records as long as they were connected to the internet. If you were out of town and your pet had a health emergency, you could bring him to any veterinarian and pull up all of his health records right on your phone. How convenient is that?
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Then there is the social aspect of Skoubee. When creating your pet’s profile you have the option of inputting his astrological sign, his favorite place to go, his favorite food, and you can even rate his sociability and intelligence on a 1 to 5 scale. You can browse other profiles and try to find your dog a friend or others may like the look of your dog’s profile and send you a message. It’s like doggy online dating, except their parents are the ones choosing their mate. Imagine how that would go over in the human world!
Now that you’ve had your technology lesson for the day, you can decide what you think about the Skoubee medal. Personally, I think it’s a great concept. I probably wouldn’t use many of the social features, but having a way to track my dog and sharing her medical needs with anyone that found her is enticing to me. Also, since she has a detailed medical history, and could have problems at any time, having her medical history on hand whenever I need it is also a nice benefit.