Who Sells the Better Item Tracker for Your Stuff? Find Out in this AdvisoryHQ TrackR vs Tile Comparison
How would you like your keys to tell you where they are when you’ve misplaced them? Leave your wallet at a restaurant? No problem! A GPS powered map will lead you right to it.
So, when you want a reliable item finder, which is better, Tile or TrackR? Both are pretty popular having sold millions of devices in the U.S. and around the world. But are they created equal?
We’ve got the lowdown for you in this TrackR bravo vs Tile matchup. We’ll review how each of them works, how durable they are, and what each of them costs so you’ll know just the one you need to never lose your keys (or other items) again.
Tile Item Tracker
AdvisoryHQ’s Review: Tile Mate vs TrackR Origin Stories
Let’s start at the beginning with how each of these companies got started. Both TrackR and Tile used crowdfunding campaigns to get off the ground, but the initial sparks that ignited them were slightly different.
Tile came into being from a man trying to help his wife find her things. The idea for TrackR happened when two college engineering students lost their keys while surfing.
TrackR was started in 2009 and the TrackR alternative, Tile, began in 2012. But it didn’t take it long to catch up. In the sales comparison of TrackR vs Tile, the younger Tile product comes out ahead.
According to Wikipedia, TrackR sold over 5 million units as of 2017 and according to Venture Beat, as of 2016 Tile sold over 10 million units.
The TrackR vs Tile origins are both are an example of invention being born from necessity and the inventive founders coming up with an easy way to keep track of keys, wallets, and even pets.
Next, let’s take a look at how the tracking technology works and whether Tile or TrackR differ in range or ease of use.
How Does Tile Work? How Does TrackR Work?
Both TrackR and the TrackR alternative, Tile, use Bluetooth to connect their mobile app with the tracking device. You simply attach the device to a keychain, slip it into a wallet, or attach it to any other item and use the app to make it sound a tone when you can’t find it.
Here’s the gist of how both item trackers work:
- Attach the Tile or TrackR device to your item
- Download the mobile app and add your mobile phone or tablet
- Within the Bluetooth range, you can click a button to have the device make a sound
- The app will also show you where the item was last seen
- Out of your range, both products have a community “lost and found” where your item can be located by another user’s app
- Either Tile or TrackR can be pressed to find a lost phone by triggering it to ring
Two key components of how each of these works are the Bluetooth range and the app that controls the device.
TrackR Bravo vs Tile: Range
The locator range is an important consideration when comparing Tile Mate vs TrackR. The farther the range you get, the better for locating what you’ve misplaced. There are some distinct differences here.
- TrackR bravo and pixel Range: up to 100 feet
- Tile Mate and Slim Range: up to 100 feet
- Tile Sport and Style Range: up to 200 feet
When it comes to TrackR bravo vs Tile reviews mentioning range, there are users of both that mention the range distance isn’t always as far as expected. However, we did find that more TrackR users mentioned ranges of much less than 100 feet than did the TrackR alternative, Tile.
One TrackR customer support representative even mentioned a range of 30 to 100 feet (much less than expected) when replying to a review at the Google Play store, due to barriers like walls and furniture.
Tile Mate vs TrackR: App
The app designs are very similar. They have an easy to use interface where you add your item, pair it with the app, and use a button to “call” your item if lost.
They also both have a GPS-based map and a way to connect to the global “lost and found” community. Both products can connect to Amazon Alexa to use the “Find My Phone” skill.
In looking at app reviews of TrackR bravo vs Tile, people score the Tile app higher on both iTunes and Google Play.
- TrackR, 2.3 out of 5
- Tile, 4.4 out of 5
- TrackR, 2.6 out of 5
- Tile, 4.3 out of 5
Many TrackR users mentioned the app being a bit buggy and losing connections often. The company does do a good job responding to issues and working to squash bugs. The reviewers for Tile seem to find less bugs with their app.
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TrackR vs Tile | Models and Pricing
Looks, durability, and how much it costs are “must knows” when it comes to choosing Tile or TrackR. Both have their pros and cons that impact the value you get for your money.
Battery life is a big one when it comes to comparing prices. One device might seem more expensive, but have a longer lifespan before it needs replacement. Let’s take a look at TrackR bravo vs Tile battery life first, then we’ll look at model features and pricing.
TrackR vs Tile: Battery Life
How does Tile work when it comes to battery life and longevity as compared to TrackR? Not quite as well.
The lack of battery life is the number one issue we found when looking at this TrackR alternative. The Tile is designed for a 1-year battery life and the big bummer—the battery is NOT replaceable. That means you need to purchase a new Tile every year.
The company will let you re-purchase at a discount up to 40% off, but the built-in end of life is still a big drawback with the Tile.
The battery life of the TrackR is also about a year, but the battery is replaceable. Plus, the company will send you a new battery for free. You get an alert when the battery is low and can order a new one right through the app.
The replaceable battery greatly increases the value because you don’t have to buy a new TrackR device every year.
Tile Mate vs TrackR: Models and Prices
If you like having more choices in the look of your device design, which is better, Tile or TrackR? Tile wins this round with four models as compared to two TrackR models.
Pricing below is for a single unit. You can save money on both Tile and TrackR when you buy multi-packs.
(available in color choices)
- TrackR bravo – $29.99 each
- TrackR pixel – $24.99 each
(one color combination only)
- Tile Mate – $20.00 each
- Tile Slim – $30.00 each
- Tile Sport – $25.00 each
- Tile Style – $25.00 each
TrackR Bravo vs Tile: Durability
If you’re attaching your item tracker to your backpack or your dog’s collar, you want to make sure it can stand up to the task. When researching several reviews for TrackR vs Tile, we found that the Tile is more durable, according to users.
TrackR users mentioned that it can come apart at times. We didn’t see that with Tile owners.
Also, only Tile has waterproof versions of their tracker. The Pro Series, Tile Sport and Tile Style, are both waterproof. Their other Tile devices are water resistant only as are the TrackR pixel and TrackR bravo.
AdvisoryHQ TrackR Bravo vs Tile Comparison | Which is Best for Me?
So, which is better, Tile or TrackR, for your particular needs? Everyone has their own personal tastes, so you’ll want to visit each manufacturer’s website to see which one fits your style best. We’ll give you a few general suggestions for your Tile Mate vs TrackR selection.
TrackR Bravo vs Tile for the Penny Pincher
If you like to watch your pennies and get the best deal when you buy something, you might be partial to the TrackR. The free battery replacements are hard to beat and you won’t have to buy a new one every year.
Tile Mate vs TrackR for the Outdoor Lover
Do you and your keys, wallet, and other important stuff go on outdoor adventures? Are you hiking or fishing often? Then you may want to invest in the Tile Sport for its durability and weather resistance.
TrackR vs Tile for the Fashionista
If you enjoy fashion and like all your accessories to match your outfit, then it’s going to be a toss-up for you. The TrackR comes in several bold colors to choose from. How does the Tile work its style? A satin white and champagne Tile designed for elegance.
AdvisoryHQ Conclusion: TrackR Bravo vs Tile
Never want to lose your keys again? Both of these tracking devices can make your life easier. When comparing Tile Mate vs TrackR, each has their pros and cons.
If you hate the thought of having to replace your device each year, then TrackR may be your pick. If you want durability and a smoothly working app, then the TrackR alternative, Tile, could be your best bet.
In our opinion, and after looking at multiple Tile or TrackR reviews, the Tile’s durability and better app slightly edge out the TrackR for everyday use. But the non-replaceable battery is something the company needs to look at, because many users don’t like it at all.
Ultimately, when it comes to TrackR vs Tile, it’s up to you and whether you’re choosing longevity or sturdy design. Both products can get you out of a jam and reduce stress when you’ve lost an important item, but the Tile comes out a little ahead in their execution of the same idea.
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