Apple recently announced its first item-tracker, AirTag. AirTags can easily be attached to objects or everyday items like purses, school bags, and keys to quickly locate them. The product works with the recently announced Find My network to anonymously share location across Apple’s network of iOS devices. How does Apple’s new item-tracker compare against the recently updated Tile Pro? Check out our comparison below to find out.
AirTag vs Tile Pro
|Bluetooth LE, U1, NFC
|Only available with Tile Premium
|Yes (works with iPhone 11 and iPhone 12 models only)
|$29 each (Buy on Amazon)
4-pack for $99 (Buy on Amazon)
|$35 each (Buy on Amazon)
2-pack for $59.99 (Buy on Amazon)
4-pack for $89.99 (Buy on Amazon)
AirTag is a small circular disc that measures 3.19 x 3.19 x 0.8cm. One side is stainless steel and the other is plastic, most reviewers have found that both sides of the device get scuffed pretty fast. If you want to attach AirTag to items for tracking, you will need to purchase a separate accessory. Apple also offers the option of free engraving so users have the option to personalize their AirTag.
Featuring a metal design, Tile Pro is a square location tracker with a built-in loop so that it can be attached to keys. The tracker measures 4.2 x 4.2 x 0.65 cm in size and comes in black and white color options.
Both AirTag and Tile use Bluetooth Low Energy as their main tracking technology. When the item-tracker is within Bluetooth range – 400ft for Tile and not mentioned for AirTag – users can use their smartphone to see its location. When out of range, users will be shown the last known location of the tracker.
To set up a Tile tracker, users need to download the Tile app from App Store, create an account, hold down the button of the tracker, place the tracker on the device and wait until it pairs.
The pairing process for AirTag is fairly painless. Similar to the pairing process used by other Apple devices such as AirPods or the Apple Pencil, users simply need to hold the AirTag near to their device, tap pair, and the process is complete.
One of the biggest differences between the two item-trackers is the apps they use. Tile trackers require users to download an app from the App Store or Play Store – which means Tile trackers work seamlessly across platforms.
There is no AirTag app. The tracker works inside the native Find My app that is built into iOS. Therefore, there is no way to use AirTag with Android.
Apple’s AirTag was designed with a feature to discourage unwanted tracking. The item-tracker is equipped with a number of safety features including the Find My app notifying iPhone users an unknown AirTag is found moving with them or in close proximity to them with a message on the screen. The same message will also appear for users that are not operating an iOS device, i.e. NFC-enabled devices.
Additionally, when locating an AirTag, Find My network will keep the information between parties protected with end-to-end encryption. Apple also says that AirTags feature unique Bluetooth identifiers that change frequently, this helps users prevent being tracked.
AirTag vs Tile Pro – Which should you buy?
AirTag’s effective community tracker, NFC compatibility, easy setup, and more make it a great option for Apple users. While Tile Pro can be considered more functional, the software integration with AirTag is hard to compete with. Meanwhile, Android users who are on the market for a slim item tracker that is functional should definitely consider Tile Pro.
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