Dogs are not just pets – they are members of the family. As a responsible dog owner, keeping your furry friend healthy, safe and protected is a top priority. This is where smart dog collars like Fi and Halo come in.
These high-tech collars go far beyond a standard leash and collar. They utilize GPS and wireless technology to track your dog’s location, monitor their activity levels, and even set virtual fences to keep them safely within boundaries.
But with both Fi and Halo offering similar core features, how do you choose between the two? This in-depth comparison guide examines all the key factors to help you decide which smart collar is the right fit for you and your pup.
How Fi and Halo Smart Dog Collars Compare
Here is an overview of how Fi and Halo stack up across the most important categories for smart collars:
|$149 + subscription
|$799 + subscription
|Up to 3 months
Now let’s dive into the details on each key feature.
GPS Location Tracking
The number one reason most people invest in a smart dog collar is for the GPS tracking capabilities. Both Fi and Halo offer accurate, real-time GPS to pinpoint your dog’s location at all times.
How Fi Collar Does GPS Tracking
The Fi Collar uses advanced LTE-M network technology to deliver reliable GPS tracking. This network provides broader coverage, faster speeds and uses less battery power than traditional networks.
Fi claims location accuracy within a 7 foot radius in open skies. The collar activates “Lost Dog Mode” if your dog escapes a set geofence, rapidly updating their location while flashing an LED light.
Owners get notified immediately via the app if their dog strays, helping get a head start on tracking them down.
How Halo Collar Does GPS Tracking
The Halo Collar also leverages GPS and GNSS (Global Navigation Satellite System) to identify your dog’s coordinates. It connects to over 50 satellites to pinpoint their location.
If your dog wanders outside a Halo virtual fence, it will track their movement in real-time and show their path on a map in the app.
While both offer precise dog tracking, Fi specializes in escape detection while Halo focuses slightly more on containment within a smart fence.
When picking a smart collar, battery life is crucial. After all, you don’t want the collar dying when you need it most to track down a lost dog.
Fi Collar Battery
The Fi Collar is the clear winner when it comes to battery performance. It boasts an impressive battery life of up to 3 months on a single charge according to tests from HotAirTag. This allows it to last far longer than Halo.
The collar uses smart power management to conserve battery by connecting to Bluetooth, WiFi and LTE-M networks dynamically. This allows it to last far longer than Halo.
Halo Collar Battery
While no slouch, the Halo Collar battery lasts around 24 hours according to most users. For heavy use cases like camping or hiking where you won’t have daily access to charging, the Fi Collar’s battery has a major advantage.
So if you want the maximum battery capacity, Fi is likely the better choice. But Halo’s day-long lifespan should suffice for most daily use cases.
Since smart collars are worn outdoors, waterproofing is a key factor. You want reassurance that rain, lakes, pools or even bath time won’t damage the high-tech collar.
Fi Waterproof Rating
The Fi Collar has an IP68 rating, meaning it is waterproof at depths of 1.5 meters for up to 30 minutes. It can hold up well for swimming, heavy rain, and wet doggy adventures.
Halo Waterproof Rating
Halo Collar has an IP67 rating, meaning it is dustproof and can withstand immersion in 1 meter depth water for 30 minutes.
So while both are waterproof, Fi offers slightly better protection at greater depths if your pup is a real water lover.
A major advantage of smart collars vs physical fences is they allow you to set virtual boundaries anywhere. Both Fi and Halo make it easy to create custom “geo-fences” using GPS.
How Fi Handles Virtual Fences
With Fi, you simply use the app to draw boundaries on a map for “Safe Zones” where you want to contain your dog. If they pass the virtual fencing, you get notified.
You can create unlimited geo-fences around a home, yard, campsite, or any location. Fi flexible fencing works well for travel and trips to the park.
How Halo Manages Virtual Fences
The Halo app also lets you establish virtual smart fences by drawing custom borders on a map. You can make up to 20 active fences spanning a 1,200 square mile area.
Halo focuses more on using feedback cues like sounds and vibration to train dogs to remain within set boundaries. It offers 15 adjustable correction levels to match your dog’s needs.
So Halo specializes more in reinforcement within smart fences while Fi focuses on tracking escapes. But both achieve flexible GPS boundaries.
In addition to location tracking, smart collars can monitor your dog’s daily activity and health. This allows you to ensure they get proper exercise and rest.
Fi Activity Tracking Features
The Fi app tracks your dog’s steps, distance traveled, playtime and rest. You can set daily step goals and see how your dog’s activity stacks up to others.
The coolest feature is the sleep tracker, letting you monitor sleep quality and patterns. This can inform you about potential health issues.
Halo Activity Tracking Features
Similarly, Halo provides daily activity metrics for your dog including walks taken, time active, and distance covered.
You can check trends over time to make sure your dog is getting adequate exercise and rest. The app also logs their responses to feedback when nearing a boundary.
So for activity tracking, both smart collars offer very useful health monitoring and fitness features.
Here is one clear differentiator – Halo Collar has integrated dog training, while Fi does not.
Halo Training Capabilities
A major selling point of Halo is the training courses developed in partnership with celebrity dog trainer Cesar Millan.
The app includes Millan’s 21-day training program for acclimating dogs to the smart collar through sound, vibration, and corrections. This professional guidance sets Halo apart.
Fi Lacks Training Elements
On the other hand, Fi Collar does not include any specific training programs or features. It focuses purely on tracking your dog’s location and activity, not modifying their behavior.
So if having built-in training tools from an expert trainer matters to you, Halo is the clear winner in this category.
Both smart collars link to a companion smartphone app to access key features and view data. Let’s see how the Fi and Halo apps compare.
Fi App Features
The Fi app makes it easy to track your dog’s real-time location, create geo-fences, monitor their activity and receive escape notifications.
Standout features include multi-user access, sleep tracking, community feed, and custom fitness goals for your dog. There’s also a “Lost Dog Mode” to aid recovery.
Halo App Features
Similarly, the Halo app shows your dog’s location, lets you build virtual fences, and checks activity metrics.
It also has a training academy with courses from Cesar Millan, real-time tracking of collar feedback, and live support for assistance.
While both apps provide core tracking and monitoring features, Halo offers more advanced built-in training tools.
As high-tech devices, smart collars have hefty price tags. You’ll pay a premium for the capabilities they offer compared to standard collars.
Fi Collar Cost
The Fi Collar itself costs $149. However, you need to purchase a subscription plan for full functionality, covering cellular service and advanced features.
Subscription options range from $8.25/month to $248 for 3 years. So total cost varies based on the subscription plan selected.Shop Fi on Amazon
Halo Collar Cost
The Halo Collar has an MSRP of $699 for the collar hardware. A monthly subscription is also required, with plans from $4.49 to $29.99 based on desired features.
So Halo Collar has a significantly higher upfront cost, making it a major investment. But its experience may justify the price for some.Shop Halo on Amazon
Key Differences Between the Collars
To recap, here are some of the main ways the Fi and Halo smart collars differ:
- Battery life – Fi Collar lasts dramatically longer (3 months vs 24 hours).
- Waterproofing – Fi rated slightly higher (IP68 vs IP67).
- Training – Halo offers integrated courses from Cesar Millan.
- Cost – Halo has higher upfront ($799 vs $149) and monthly fees.
- Escape alerts – Fi specializes in notifications if dog straying.
- Fencing – Halo focuses more on reinforcement within boundaries.
Which Smart Collar is Right for You?
With this comprehensive feature comparison complete, which smart dog collar ultimately wins out – Fi or Halo?
Here are some key factors to help you decide:
Best for Traveling Dogs
For dogs who frequently travel, camp or hike with their owners, the Fi Collar is likely the better pick.
The long 3 month battery life means you don’t have to charge it daily. And the subscription works nationwide so your dog can roam without losing tracking.
Best for Home/Yard Boundaries
If you want to set clear boundaries around your home or yard, the Halo Collar shines.
Halo makes it easy to create custom geo-fences with varying levels of feedback your dog needs to stay within the perimeter.
Best for High Tech Features
While expensive, the Halo Collar offers the most robust set of features – from Cesar Milan’s training courses to real-time tracking of collar responses.
So for owners who want the highest-end smart collar experience, Halo delivers.
Best for Budget-Conscious Owners
The Fi Collar clocks in at around $150, a fraction of the Halo’s $799 price.
For shoppers wanting core GPS tracking without all the bells and whistles, Fi provides great functionality and value.
- Smart collars like Fi and Halo offer GPS tracking, activity monitoring and geofencing to keep dogs safe.
- Fi Collar’s main advantages are long battery, affordable price and good for travel.
- Halo Collar focuses more on reinforcement within boundary fences and training.
- Consider your budget, usage needs and required features when choosing a collar.
- For most owners, Fi likely provides the best mix of essential features and affordability.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do these collars work without a subscription?
No, a subscription is required with both Fi and Halo collars to access key features like GPS tracking, activity monitoring, and virtual fencing capabilities.
What happens if the collar loses cellular signal?
The collars will intelligently switch to Bluetooth or WiFi connectivity when available to maintain tracking until cellular signal returns.
Can the collars detect if a dog is barking or digging?
No, neither collar offers specific bark or dig detection, just general activity monitoring based on movement and GPS data.
How accurate is the GPS tracking?
Both collars use advanced GPS technology and cellular networks, accurate to approximately 10 feet outdoors in most cases. Accuracy can decrease around buildings.
Are the collars safe for puppies and small dogs?
The collars likely won’t fit puppies. Most recommend your dog be at least 10 lbs before using these collars. Always consult your vet on appropriate ages.
The Bottom Line
Fi and Halo are both excellent smart dog collar options with helpful training and tracking capabilities.
While Halo Collar certainly offers advanced features, the more budget-friendly Fi Collar likely delivers everything the average owner needs to keep their pup safe and monitored.
Whichever collar you choose, this guide covers the key comparisons to help you pick the right one for your canine companion!