Ever ran around your house two minutes before you need to leave for work finding your keys, only to discover that the elves the night before have moved them to God knows where? Well, Tile can help with that.
Similar to an Apple Air Tag, and of course we’re all familiar with those now, Tile works by enabling its users to track their belongings, in a nutshell. This is done by setting up a wireless connection between your phone and Tile, and then using the Tile Network, which is essentially people with the Tile app installed on their phones, to find your belongings.
I’ve put my Tile on my car keys as the actual product has a hole on it so you can hook it to a keyring loop. I needed a knife to open up the loop however as the Tile is pretty chunky for what it is.
The Tile Mate measures at around 1.5 x 1.5 inches with a 0.5 inch depth. It’s made from plastic and is pretty solid. Not as solid as the metal frame of the Pro model, but still, it won’t break if dropped from waist height. It has a button on the front that can be pressed to find your phone, and there are speaker holes dotted around so you can hear the ring of the Tile. One downfall with its design though is that it’s been sealed, which means you won’t be able to replace the battery once it dies. Tile does quote it lasting for a number of years, and even offer a recycling service once the Tile has died which is great for those keen on keeping their e-waste to a minimum. On the back you can also find a QR code, so if someone finds your Tile, they can scan it with their phone and get your contact information to return your belongings to you.
Setting my Tile up to the partner app on my Google Pixel 7 Pro was seamless, and worked by scanning the QR code on the back of the Tile itself. From here, you choose the classification, and this can be keys, different types of bags and more.
Once on the main menu, you can see all of the Tiles you’ve connected to your app and even the mobile phone involved for the two-way tracking. Going into my Tile here, I can see my location history, the Find My Phone button and an option to change the chime. However, there are also some features that require a subscription. The Pro plan enables a 30-day location history though I’m not sure this is massively important. There are also Smart Alerts which will send notifications to your phone if you left a Tile item behind, like fi you leave your keys behind for example. And finally, you can find a location sharing among multiple users feature too, though they would need to be Tile users too.
The Tile has a 76-meter radius on it, so you can find your belongings locally, like if you’ve lost your phone in the house or find your keys have fallen down the back of the sofa, that kind of thing. It also uses a technology that pings other Tile users if you have a Tile Mate in the wind. This will give you as up-to-date as possible ‘recent location’ information so you can track your Tile in real time to the location of your belongings. There is a map built into the Tile app for you to look at and see where your Tile is. And finally, if you’ve all but given up hope of seeing your stuff again, you can tap the Notify Me When Found button, which will send you a notification if your stuff is pinged by another user on the Tile Network. All they have to do is be in the range of your Tile to pick up the signal.
I gave the Tile to a family member who was making a trip to London. It was pinged at The Hop Exchange and the app gave me a radius it could have been in that area, which also covered The Breakfast Club venue over the road. The app however only gave me one ping of this venue, I could not access the location history unless I was willing to upgrade to their premium plan which is either £29.99 for the year or £2.99 a month. Location data like this though is super important and impressive as the fact if my keys were found at that venue I visited, I know they could have been handed in and I could go and collect them. If not, I could just follow the location history to find where they end up, and go and get them from there.
The Tile Mate comes in a number of package options, ranging from one Tile at £19.99, two at £37.99, or a four-pack at £41.99 at the time of writing this review which offers the best saving by far, though how long this sale will last for I have no idea, and the original price is just over £75. You can find more information on the Tile Mate here.