Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Review: Tile Mate helps you find your lost items in a simple and unobtrusive way

If you’re anything like me lately, as I get older, you’re always losing things. I haven’t yet lost anything extremely important, but lately, and quite regularly, do I misplace my keys, misplace my watch and sometimes even my kid (just kidding on that one). When this happens, I often spend countless hours running around trying to figure out where I’ve set these items. They usually end up being in plain sight, but in the moment of panic of losing these items, it never feels like it, and thus the endless search for these items begins.

And that’s just what the Tile Mate aims to prevent. Not the loss of these items, but giving you quick access to finding them without investing a huge amount of time in turning your house upside down. The Tile Mate is Tile’s newest product and comes with a few neat improvements over the original Tile.

The Tile Mate is, well, a tile. All you’re getting here is a slim white square with rounded off corners.The Tile logo sits in the middle of the location tracker and is actually some of the key functionality of the device (more on that later).

The design is minimalistic, but with this refresh on the original device, the Tile Mate is actually 25% smaller. This makes it even easier to fit the device around your key ring or anything you don’t want to lose. With its minimalistic design, the Tile Mate is most definitely a plain looking device, but that is by no means a bad thing. Since it isn’t exotically designed, the Tile Mate subtlety blends in with your belongings. And with its slim profile, it never gets in the way.

The Tile Mate actually works phenomenally well. It’s one of those “it just works” type of things, actually. Hook up the Tile Mate to Bluetooth for the first time, and you’ll never have to worry about setup ever again. Even if you turn Bluetooth on and off, the Tile Mate will automatically connect to your phone.

If you press the Tile logo on the Mate itself twice, it will start buzzing your phone, even if your phone is on silent. You can actually buzz the Tile Mate from your phone within the app. Once you select the Tile to ring, you should hear a fairly loud noise that will help you locate the location of the tile, as well as whatever it’s attached to. To stop the ringing, you tap the Tile logo on the Mate once, indicating you’ve found it. We’ll dive more into the app later, but the overall functionality of the device is excellent.

Tile says the battery on the Mate should last up to a year. It’s non-removable, so you’ll need to buy a new Tile Mate when it runs out.

In my time with the Tile Mate, it has had absolutely no hiccups at all. It works phenomenally well, and even comes with a limited warranty if you run into any issues.

Tile’s software is on point as well. It’ll help you setup your Tile from start to finish, providing you with very clear instructions on how to do it. Once it’s setup, you’ll see a screen with all of your Tile devices on it. Starting the Title setup process is easy–all you have to do is press the “+” button at the bottom right corner to get started!

You can name each Tile for their respective situations, too. For instance, you might call one “Keys’ because they’re attached to your keys or another one “Wallet” for, well, your wallet! Alternatively, you can switch to a “Map” view to get a pinpointed location of where one of your Tile devices are.

Another neat thing about the Title app is that it gives you different ringtone options for your Tile devices. You’re not stuck with just one for all of your Tiles, so you can mix it up a bit!

One last neat thing about the Tile app is the community features. If you’re Tile isn’t where you last left it or where the app says it was last seen, you can tap the Notify When Found button in the application. This will securely and anonymously put all other Tile apps out there on the lookout for your lost Tile (and hopefully your items with it!). If another Tile app finds it, you’ll be sent an alert with it’s last seen location. This is called Tile’s Community Find feature, and employs their global network across 200 countries and territories. Tile says this helps people locate more than a half million items per day.

All in all, Tile’s software is top-notch, and the Community Find feature is an ingenius idea.

All in all, the Tile Mate is an excellent product. With a subtle design, the Tile Mate fits in with almost all of your belongings, giving you the peace of mind of never losing them again. The Tile Mate will run you $25 for just one, but if you’re interested in buying multiples, Tile does offer 4-pack discounts. It would originally cost you $100 for a 4-pack, but Tile gives you a multi-Tile discount at just $70.

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