It’s been few month now Mio is wearing the beacon, so what can we conclude ? First part: The quest of a beacon for cats (part 1)
The CR2032 battery lasted 100 days, with 60 seconds between RF emissions. It corresponds to roughly 144’000 pulses. As the beacon transmits the battery voltage, I could log and trace the trend. However the voltage of these battery don’t drop gently at the end of their life. There is a slight slope a month before dying, but I suppose it’s better to anticipate and exchange the battery after 12 weeks of use.
Mio’s collar has a lock that opens itself if too much pull strength is applied. It appended once the collar stayed outside because Mio hang it up at a fence (or maybe it’s possible I didn’t close it correctly).
It was interesting to search it by looking at the RSSI value on the receiver. It was fun as well for my neighbors, how saw me roaming around with an antenna. In the end the necklace was lying on a fence something like 50 meters away from the house. By making circles around I could estimate the range to maximum 100 meters.
As it was rightfully pointed out to me, the beacon allows to find the collar, not the cat. But the chances Mio keeps the collar is greater than nothing at all.
I’m rather satisfied by the battery lifetime and the range, so I will probably keep this solution for a long time. We really enjoy seeing the beacon signal chart, it reassures us to know Mio is around.