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Security & privacy

8 smart ways to use Bluetooth trackers like the AirTag and Tile

You’ve probably heard all the buzz about Bluetooth trackers, from Apple AirTags to Tile trackers. Tap or click here to find out the difference between these two beloved gadgets. Whichever one you choose, you’re buying a popular piece of lost and found software that can save your hide in times of crisis.

Take cybersecurity CEO Dan Guido, for example. Someone stole his electric scooter on Aug. 2, not knowing there were two hidden AirTags inside. “I was able to use the Apple Find My network and UWB direction finding to recover the scooter today,” he said in a Tweet.

Bluetooth trackers are most famous for helping people track down their lost or stolen items. But there are a few extra uses you might not have known about. Here are some insider secrets that can help you get the most out of your AirTag or Tile trackers. We’ll start with the basics.

1. Ever lost your wallet? Attach a tracker for peace of mind

You come home after a long, stressful day. Patting your pockets, you look for your wallet so you can put it away. Cold sweat breaks out once you realize it’s gone.

Just think about all the important stuff we keep in our wallets, like:

When you find out it’s gone, it’s easy to go into panic mode. If someone steals your wallet, they have a goldmine on their hands. After all, private data makes big money these days.

Someone could even use the information in your wallet to steal your identity. Tap or click here to find out how a stranger could steal your government benefits with just your name and a few bucks. Even worse, someone could commit crimes in your name that can stain your record for decades.

On the bright side, a 2019 study revealed that people are more altruistic than we might think. Many of them are likely to return your lost wallet, not out of kindness, but due to a desire to feel like a good person. Still, though, who wants to leave their digital safety up to the whims of strangers?

To keep your wallet safe, slip a Bluetooth tracker into one of the pockets. They’re slim, thin and light, so they won’t add any bulk or weight. Plus, it’ll give you some much-needed peace of mind when disaster strikes!

2. You can also attach one to your keys

After your wallet, your keychain is the second scariest personal item to lose. After all, you can’t even go home without it. You’ve probably got your parking card there. Or maybe you can’t access your workplace without the access card on your keychain.

From AirTag and Tile to SmartTag or Chipolo, there are a ton of key finders on the market. Just buy one, attach it to a smartphone app and you can track down your lost keychain from anywhere. The only problem is finding the right one!

Firstly, the Tile Pro has a loud alarm and a range of 400 feet. When you’re ambling around your home, opening drawers and lifting curtains, the blaring sound will cut your search short. That means you can get out of the door ASAP.

Plus, you don’t even need to buy Tile Premium for it to work well. Even better, the Tile Pro, Chipolo and SmartTag all come with built-in holes. This allows for easy attachment to your keychain.

Discerning shoppers may be especially attracted to the SmartTag. That’s because it can connect to other smart devices so you can automate your routine. You’ll need Samsung’s SmartThings app to access your smart home features, but it’s as easy as pressing a button.

Unlike the other item trackers out there, Apples’ AirTag doesn’t have any openings you can use to attach it directly to a keychain. That’s intentional: Apple wants you to spend extra money on accessories like colorful leather key rings. Refusing to be milked dry, one iFixIt writer drilled a hole into an AirTag and showed you how to do it, too.

However, many customers actually love the fact that it doesn’t come with built-in holes. They like the creativity of picking out an accessory that matches their aesthetic. Customers love the way it works, too — Apple’s 4-pack of AirTags is No. 3 on Amazon’s New Releases in Electronics list.

There is another reason why customers love AirTags. Earlier, we mentioned that Tile trackers have a range of 400 feet. Apple AirTags don’t have a range in the same way since they work on Apple’s Find My network.

That means as long as your tracker is in the Bluetooth range of any iPhone or Apple device, you can track your items. Cool, huh? Tap or click here for the full Komando scoop on AirTags.

3. Luggage

Vacations are all about relaxing, but losing luggage can sink a torpedo into any zen state you hoped to achieve. Luckily, GPS trackers can help you find your lost luggage. So when you’re carting your luggage around the airport or the hotel, slip a Bluetooth tracker into a pocket for that extra peace of mind.

Then again, exposing the tracker instead of hiding it inside the bag might be better. You don’t want anything to block the signal.

You can slip it into an outer pocket or attach it to the zipper with a small key ring. If you went so far as to buy a combination lock, you could wind the tracker around that as well.

4. Keep track of your pets

That’s right — Bluetooth trackers aren’t just for your gadgets. They’re also a great way to keep track of your furry friends. Kim put one of these bad boys on her dog, Abby. (It’s the black attachment to her pink collar.)

Humans have jewelry and sunglasses. Dogs can have Bluetooth trackers as snazzy accessories.

One Amazon reviewer bought a silicone case for her AirTags and attached it to her dogs, who she says love to escape for wild adventures around the neighborhood.

“This way I can find my dogs before I get the nasty messages that the dogs are loose,” she said. “I can track them right from my iPhone and set up was so simple. Worth the money and no monthly subscription needed like other pet trackers.”

5. Cars

Do you always forget where you parked? Try slipping a tracker into your glove compartment. Or maybe, instead of fuzzy dice, you can slip a tracker on a ring underneath the rearview mirror.

Then, all you have to do is open up your smartphone app. Follow the coordinates and you can find your car. You just saved yourself 15 minutes of wandering around in the hot sun, thanks to your tracker.

As a side note, a Bluetooth tracker won’t work if you want to track someone else who is driving. Maybe you’re suspicious of a cheating spouse, or you want to watch over a kid who just learned how to drive. Bluetooth trackers typically have a range of around 200 feet. You should look into a GPS or GSM tracker instead.

Did that just make you afraid someone could slip a tracker into your car? We’ve got you covered. Tap or click here to find a hidden GPS tracker on your car.

6. Motorcycle

Don’t have a car? Bluetooth trackers also work for motorcycles. You’ll just have to find a good place to attach it since you have less space to work with.

ABC7 reports that one motorcycle owner lost his ride for three days. Since it was a rare Italian motorcycle, he stashed a Tile under the seat ahead of time in case someone snatched it. His worst dream came true: One day it went missing, so he reported it to Tile as stolen.

Three days later, he received a notification that it was discovered. There were no arrests … but the bike had 300 extra miles. So if you own a fancy ride you don’t want to lose, do what he did and insert a tracker. It’s better to be safe than sorry!

7. Guns

That’s right — you can also use these gadgets to keep track of valuables like a gun. Attach one to the bag or case where you keep a rifle, shotgun or pistol. 

If anyone ever gets their hands on it, a tracker can help you find its location immediately, before anything dangerous happens.

8. Elderly parents

If you live with your parents, you’re probably worried about them falling down and not being able to get up. Maybe your older parent likes to putter around in the garden and has lost their balance in the past. Either way, asking them to put a tracker in their pocket could help them stay safe if they get hurt.

Caring for aging parents or relatives is a huge responsibility that can often feel daunting. Luckily, tech can go a long way in reassuring you that your family member is safe. From medical alert systems to smart assistants, there are many tech gadgets that help you keep a digital eye on your loved one.

Tap or click here for our guide to tech that can help you care for an aging relative.

By clicking our links, you’re supporting our research. As an Amazon Associate, we earn a small commission from qualifying purchases. Recommendations are not part of any business incentives.

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