As of 2015, commercially available microchips, particularly implantable microchips, are not powered by global positioning system technology, notes AntiChips.com. Generally, these electronic devices are equipped with a radio frequency identification integrated circuit that provides limited tracking capability.
Microchips that are designed to be subcutaneously embedded into living flesh are typically made up of an RFID chip, antenna and a capacitor that are packed inside a bio-grade glass case. Common applications for these devices include the unique identification of humans and animals by cross-referencing the information contained inside the microchip to an external database.
Beginning in the early 1990s, the use of microchip implants in various animals, including dogs, cats, fish, farm and laboratory animals, became prominent. In the United States, the two major companies that market microchip pet implants are AVID and HomeAgain, states AntiChip.com. AVID carries the Secure/Encrypted FriendChip brand while HomeAgain distributes the AVID Eurochip or FECAVA.
The microchip implants offered by both AVID and HomeAgain are not GPS-enabled and do not have the capacity to track lost pets. The area coverage for these devices, particularly for a VeriChip, is only limited to three inches to one foot. To detect a signal from these RFID chips, a compatible scanner has to be within very close range of the microchip to obtain a reading.