Apple AirTags offer an easy and cheap way to Track tons of everyday items. The only problem is that they are tied to Apple products. Android users have several options, but there is one that stands out from the rest.
These simple bluetooth enabled devices can be plugged into things and you can track their location with an app. Android users may be missing out on the easy system-level integration of AirTags on iPhone, but they are not without options.
The best: Tile Mate
tile is hands down the name most people think of when it comes to bluetooth trackers, and for good reason. The company has been around for a while and there are several models to choose from. What we think is best for most people is the tile mate.
Like AirTags, the Tile Mate uses Bluetooth Low Energy (LE) to connect to your Android phone or tablet. The Tile Mate’s range is stated to be 200 feet, but in the real world you will likely get a little less. This is still very good and should be fine for most situations.
What if you are not in this area? The tile app shows you where the tracker was when it was last connected. If that’s not enough, you can mark it as “Lost” in the app and overlay other Tile users to make it easier to find.
Older tile models were essentially disposable as the batteries couldn’t be replaced, but that’s no longer the case. The Tile Mate uses a standard CR1632 lithium battery that can be easily and cost-effectively replaced by yourself.
The Tile mate is slightly larger than an Apple AirTag but has a key ring hole so you don’t need any additional accessories to attach it to anything. Unfortunately, the Tile Mate is only available in white, but there are Third Party Cases available.
For $ 3 a month, you can subscribe to Tile Premium for some additional features. This includes the free battery change (A 5-pack only costs about $ 6), a longer warranty (from 1 to 3 years), 30 days of location history, unlimited location sharing, more warning options and text support.
All in all, the Tile Mate is a very solid counterpart to AirTags and offers the flexibility to work with more than just Apple products. Tile Mate is $ 24.99 for one or $ 47.99 for a two-pack. That’s $ 5 less than the AirTag.
Best for Android
Honorable Mention: Chipolo ONE
Tile has a good reputation, various products to choose from and a large network of users. However, if for some reason you don’t want to go that route, the Chipolo One is another great option.
Chipolo One offers the same features as the Tile Mate for the same price. It’s round instead of square, but similar in size and also has a keyhole. Chipolo offers a nice range of colors which is a bonus.
The only advantage you get with the Chipolo One over any tile tracker is alerts when you are out of range. You have to pay for the premium subscription to get this feature with Tile. We don’t think that’s enough to make you decide on the Chipolo One, but your use case may vary.
In general, the Chipolo One is a perfect Bluetooth tracker, but it’s hard to beat Tile’s large user base if you need help finding something.
A solid option
What about Samsung Galaxy SmartTags?
If you are an Android user with a Samsung Galaxy device this might be of interest to you Samsung’s own bluetooth tracker. Unfortunately, the company’s Galaxy SmartTags don’t come with many perks.
While they have similar features to AirTags and Tiles and have a tight price tag, Galaxy SmartTags are very limited. For one, they only work with Samsung devices, not even other Android devices. They’re also missing some of the sensors in the tile.
If you don’t get a free Galaxy SmartTag when you buy a Samsung phone, we think you’ll be much better off with the Tile Mate or Chipolo One.