Apple’s rumored Bluetooth-based object tracker may not have launched (yet), but arguably the biggest name in the space recently entered the Indian market. Tile products are now officially available in India, though the company has not entered the country directly. Instead, it has appointed an official distributor who is importing and selling these products in the region. WebsiteAmazon India, and other retail channels.
Though Tile Mate has been available in India since its launch a few months back, the company recently expanded its portfolio to bring Tile Stickers, Tile Slim and Tile Pro trackers in the country. We’ve had the chance to spend some time with the keyring-sized Tile Mate and credit-card-like Tile Slim, and here’s how our experience was.
At its core, the technology behind Tile Trackers is pretty simple. Each unit contains a Bluetooth module, a small speaker, and a battery, along with other components that are needed to keep the whole thing functional. It’s all been fitted to each model’s various sized and shaped bodies, from the ultra-small Tile Sticker to the premium Tile Pro, fitting everything else in the company’s lineup.
The idea is to link these trackers to keys, wallets, and other products that we all inevitably spend some time searching for on a regular basis. The next time you can’t find any of them, you can use the Tile companion app on your phone to have the Tile Tracker beep, and then follow the sound to find the product. This works as long as the thing you’re looking for (and thus its attached tracker) is within Bluetooth range (which it often is).
It’s a simple concept, and Tile should be given the credit for delivering on this promise with the ease-of-use and clarity it deserves. To get started, you’ll need to download the Tile app for iPhone or Android. Upon launching the app, you’ll be prompted to select the Tile device you’re trying to add, and then to sign up (or sign in, if you already have one) for a Tile account. Is).
Pairing your Tile Tracker with the app is as easy as pressing the button on the unit and following the instructions the app shows. You can assign each tracker a custom name and category (such as keys, wallet, dog, luggage, backpack, remote, etc.), and this will determine the icon that appears next to the tracker in the Tile app. You can also associate a custom image with each tracker, for example, an actual photo of the object the Tile is attached to.
That’s about it, until you need to find the object to which the Tile Tracker is attached. At that point, you can launch the Tile app and simply tap on the ‘Find’ button to locate the tile of your choice. If said Tile is within Bluetooth range, it will immediately start playing a sound, and you can use that to find your way around it. The volume and tone the tracker plays can be customized from within the app.
Even at their maximum volume levels, the Tile Mate and Tile Slim’s sounds aren’t very loud, which means you’re unlikely to hear either of them in, say, a bag with you. Inside are your keys that are in another room, or in case you lose something under the couch cushion. (The Rs 3,999 Tile Pro is said to have the loudest speaker of all the models, as well as the longest range.)
Thankfully, the Tiles app uses visual cues to indicate your position relative to the object—filled circles indicate you’re close to the object (think “you’re getting hot”). ‘Hot or Cold’ game), which can be used as a guide to walk around until you are old enough to hear the tracker ring.
If the tracker is not within Bluetooth range of your phone, the app will show you your last known location using the GPS on the paired phone. For this, you (obviously) need to give the Tile app access to your location data on your phone’s background. You can choose to be notified when the tracker is “found” again, that is, when you move within its Bluetooth range.
If you actually lose something with the Tile tracker attached – for example, if you leave your keys or wallet in the cab – (in addition to using the last known location feature above) you can mark the tracker as lost. are, and can pin your hopes on Tile the community to find it for you,
This means the next time your tracker is exposed to any phone running the Tile app in the background, you’ll be notified of the tracker’s location. This happens without the intervention (or even knowledge) of other Tile users, so we can see this feature becoming useful if Tile’s community gets a foothold within India the way it does in markets like the US. Is.
It all worked as expected during our tests. Tile has also done a good job of being a good citizen of various platforms. There are native apps for the Apple Watch, and support for Siri Shortcuts on iOS, so you can tell Siri, “Find my Wallet” and have the tracker beep almost instantly. there also Support for Google Assistant To achieve something similar, however, the Tile Alexa skill is not yet available in India.
If you have a Tile tracker, and need to find your phone, you can simply double-press the button on the tracker, and your phone will start ringing, even if it’s in silent mode.
Tile notes that both the Slim and Mate models have a Bluetooth range of 200 feet (61 meters), but our tests showed that claim is extremely generous. We found the range to be similar to that of your average Bluetooth headset, and you’ll likely have a better experience with a clear line of sight. With that said, we didn’t find the range to be a problem.
The Tile Slim is rated for three years of battery life, and will be useless once the battery runs out. Tile lets you trade in an old tracker for a discount on a new one in other countries, but the feature isn’t available in India just yet. The new Tile Pro and Tile Mate trackers have user-replaceable batteries that are each rated to last for a year. The Tile Slim is said to be waterproof, while the Mate is only “water resistant.”
This is basic functionality, though there are a slew of additional features that become enabled if you’re willing to pay a recurring subscription to Tile Premium. The most important of these is Smart Alerts, which allows you to receive notifications when you leave a location without the tracker.
For example, we set the Tile app to remind us if we’ve ever left our house without our wallet (with the Tile Slim inside). It works as advertised, though it’s worth pointing out that these alerts are based on GPS-based geofencing, not Bluetooth, so we only got alerts when we moved a few hundred meters away from home, or a small But still there was significant running distance. Obviously, it’s not as easy to get an alert as soon as a move out, but it’s still a lot better than finding out about a missing wallet when it’s time to pay later in the day.
Tile Premium lets you view a 30-day location history for your trackers, and you get the ability to share your Tile trackers’ location data with others so they can keep tabs on your stuff if needed. In select markets – but not in India – users of trackers like the Tile Mate, which have replaceable batteries, will automatically receive a free replacement battery when the app detects that they are running out. The Tile app lets users set their postal address which will be used for dispatch. Tile Premium users also get “premium customer care” and extended warranty coverage on the trackers.
Tile Premium service costs $3 (approx. Rs. 210) per month or $30 (approx. Rs. 2,100) if paid annually. In India, the cost of the service is Rs. 200 and Rs. 2,200 respectively for Android users, but iOS users will have to pay Rs. 219 or Rs. 2,299 respectively for the same set of features.
Tile’s trackers—especially the Tile Mate and Tile Slim, which we reviewed here—embodies the adage of doing one thing and doing it well. Other than their not-so-loud speakers, we have no real complaints about the trackers as they deliver on everything they promise.
One thing we’re not thrilled about is the pricing. 2,499 at Rs. 2,499 and Rs. 2,999 respectively, the Tile Mate and Tile Slim don’t look crazy expensive, but that’s not exactly the kind of pricing that will make you want to go out and buy a bunch of Tile trackers and stick them on everything you own. Plus, to get the most out of trackers, you’ll need to purchase a Tile Premium subscription. This will be an additional cost, although many users will be happy with the core functionality offered out of the box.
Tile offers multi-packs Those that cost a bit, but they’re still not as economical Other similar products available in the market, Along with that, Tile’s competitive advantage is a software platform that is feature-filled as well as reliable and potentially a community of users that can help you find your lost trackers.