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Source Tile Arpereztechcrunch is preparing to launch a new product this year that will be a competitor to Apple’s long-awaited AirTags and other upcoming lost and found trackers, including those from Samsung, TechCrunch has learned.
While previous Tile trackers have used Bluetooth to help users locate lsarahost items — such as a misplaced keychain — Tile’s new product will take different advantage of UWB (Ultra-Wideband) technology to find lost items.
It will also use augmented reality to guide users to the location of the lost object via the Tile mobile app.
Also, Ultra-wideband technology is available on newer iPhone 11 and iPhone 12 models and selects Android devices, including the latest Samsung devices.
UWB is a very short-range wireless communication protocol like Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, but it operates at very high frequencies.
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Sarah Perez currently works as a writer for TechCrunch, having previously worked at ReadWriteWeb for over three years.
Before becoming a reporter, she worked at I.T. in various industries, including banking, retail, and software.
Coverage of tech startups that breaks down companies’ funding, growth, and long-term evolution across all stages and verticals, including weather, cryptocurrency, fintech, SaaS, transportation, and consumer technology.
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Based on Tile’s in-house concept art for the device (see below), Tile’s UWB model will be similar to its other small trackers, like Tile Mate and Tile Pro.
It has a square shape, a center button, and a flat back. To facilitate mounting with an adhesive.
And also, like other Tile dongles, it can be attached to a keychain.
Tile dongles typically plug into things like keys, remote controls, wallets, duffels, luggage, or other small carry items or plug into larger devices like personal electronics or bikes.
However, lost items can only be located via nearby Bluetooth or further away via Tile’s “Community Find” network.
The latter used the Tile app installed on its users’ phones to help locate any Tile trackers set to a lost mode and ping the item’s owner when it was found.
The company says this solution is designed for those items where using a Bluetooth tracker isn’t the right option.
But it also introduces new Tile users to it as the stickers are branded with the company’s logo.
Tile raised concern in antitrust hearings last year about how Apple is using its platform and market power to penetrate competitive businesses.
Tile is not publicly speaking about its plans for a UWB device.
“While we can’t comment on our product roadmap, we’re constantly striving to improve our customer experience and solve the problem of finding lost items,” a Tile spokesperson told TechCrunch.
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