“The Tile Mate is a tiny tool to help you keep a tab on your personal belongings”

While there are plenty of studies which prove being forgetful actually makes us smarter, I for one could do with slightly better memory recall. You see, over the course of my tenure at 91mobiles, I’ve lost the keys to my office drawer twice, along with numerous cables and phone chargers. And although my forgetfulness hasn’t come back to bite me yet, I honestly dread the day it does.

Thankfully, it’s 2019 and technology has the solution to most, if not all problems. Case in point, the Tile Mate Bluetooth tracker which was launched recently in the country and promises to keep you from getting a panic attack every time you can’t find your personal belongings. I’ve been testing the unit for a while, and here are my two cents on the same.

As its moniker suggests, the Tile Mate looks like a tiny tile which is sleek enough to fit in your wallet or any slot in your backpack. The unit features a physical button, cleverly hidden underneath the Tile logo, along with a speaker unit towards the back. There’s also a circular cutout on the Mate’s design which can be used to attach it to a set of keys. Moreover, while this is the first Tile product I’ve ever used, I did look up the company’s older models which shipped with built-in batteries. To that extent, the newer Mate features a user-replaceable battery which should increase the product’s shelf life.

Setting up the Tile is quite easy. All you need to do is download the companion app from the Play Store or App Store, log in using your social media accounts or create a different ID altogether and voila – you’re ready to go. The thing I liked the most about the Tile app was its ‘easy on the eyes’ user interface. The app is loaded to the brim with features but it’s not overwhelming to first time owners, which is great.

Furthermore, the app gives you the option to either pair the Tile to a host of products ranging from Bose or Sennheiser’s Bluetooth headphones to tracking your personal belongings such as a set of keys, your backpack and much more. Now, as of writing this review, I am yet to receive the replacement keys for my office drawer and therefore, I put the tracker in the next most important thing I carry– my wallet. It goes without saying that I can’t fathom to lose it and thankfully, Tile’s latest tracker came in clutch a couple of days ago when I left it at my home. It was only after I’d reached my office when the panic set in, and I hastily opened the Tile app to locate it.

Now, here are two things that you should know –

1 – The Tile Mate doesn’t ship with its own GPS and instead connects to your phone over Bluetooth. Therefore, it’ll only chime if it’s within Bluetooth range of your phone.

2 – The Tile app does offer a premium service which offers Smart Alerts. Provided you opt for the service, the Tile will automatically chime if you’re leaving the house or work without your belongings.

Now, being the cheapskate that I am, I didn’t opt for the premium plan. However, you can access your location history from within the app and pinpoint where you last left the Tile. The map is quite detailed, and you can even zoom in to get a precise location of your belonging’s whereabouts. Since the app showed me that I’d left my wallet (with the Tile in it) back at home, I called my parents to check whether it was in my room. Sure enough, after a gentle scolding, my parents did confirm that they’d found my wallet on my bed.

And that’s not all. The Tile Mate offers a multitude of other useful features and you can press the button on the unit to locate your paired smartphone. What’s more, on the off chance you misplace your Tile and it’s not within Bluetooth range, you can count on Tile’s ever-growing community to help locate it. You see, the Tile app will notify you if another Tile user is in the vicinity of your lost item, thereby updating the product’s location for you.

Despite its numerous benefits, the Tile service is still far from perfect. For one, it’d be extremely difficult to locate a Tile in a loud area, as the speaker output from the unit is tiny. Moreover, Tile’s app requires location services and Bluetooth to work, which might not sit well with users iffy about their privacy. Then, there’s the price and at Rs 2,499 per Tile, the Mate is an expensive proposition.

In summation, the Tile Mate is an investment to protect your investments. It’s not for everyone, but if you can’t keep a lid on your forgetfulness, then the Tile Mate could help you keep a tab on your valuables.

Editor’s rating: 4 / 5