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Bluetooth tracker

A Bluetooth tracker, also called smart tracker or tracking tag, is a small device that can be attached to any object and monitored using a smartphone. Basic devices, such as a simple tracker you might attach to a wallet, keys, TV remote or a phone is a small square shape or a key fob design that emits an audible alarm when accessed via smartphone or mobile device application.

Tracking Distance

These trackers are limited in that the device attached to the tracker can only be found if it is located within the device's Bluetooth range. Typically the range of a Bluetooth tracking device is a 200-foot distance between the smartphone and the tracking device, so these trackers are useful only in situations where items are misplaced within a short distance from you—like losing your wallet in between the couch cushions or when you forget where you last had your car keys. Some manufacturers allow devices to be tracked in an online community setting to expand distances in which tracked items can be located.

Bluetooth tracker device
Image Description: The Tile Style Bluetooth Tracker.

Basic Bluetooth Tracking Device Features

The tracker typically requires a single battery and connection via mobile device to operate. Some trackers have a non-replaceable battery that will last one year with no need to charge the battery. The downside is that while you don't need to remember to charge or change a battery, you will need to replace the tracking device each year.

  • Device can be located within the standard Bluetooth 4.0 range (60 meters / 200-ft).
  • Great for finding an item you frequently misplace inside.
  • Choose non-replaceable battery or devices battery charging options.
  • Compatible with most smartphones and mobile devices.
  • Basic customization options via the smartphone app.

The smartphone app associated with the device will have some basic options that allow users to customize the sound played when locating the tracker as well as some limited history options, such as the last few places the device was located.

Compare with Keyfinders and GPS Tracking Devices

Popular products include the Tile brand (Tile Slim, Tile Mate, Tile Sport) and TrackR (TrackR Pixel), Chipolo and other manufacturers.  Similar products include keyfinders where the product includes a base similar to that of a cordless phone with a  push button to trigger the tracking alarm and the larger category of GPS-based trackers.  While the GPS tracker is typically more expensive, the devices are better suited to tracking over longer distances and are often used in pet tags, outdoor gear or bikes tags and similar tracking devices.

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