If I were to recommend one Bluetooth tracker company above all the rest, it would have to be Tile. I’m not saying that just because something is popular automatically makes it good, but I am saying that with 80% of the U.S market share, Tile has to be doing something right. They’ve sold over 20 million trackers in more than 230 countries, and every single day, Tile trackers are used on three million items. But with so many options, which Tile tracker is right for you?
In this Tile tracker review, I’m comparing the Tile Mate, the Tile Slim, the Tile Pro, the Tile Sticker, the Tile Style, and the Tile Sport. Please note that the Tile Style and Tile Sport are no longer available on the Tile website, but they are available from Amazon and other third-party retailers. I’m going to go over the trackers’ design, features, and the Tile app. Ready, set, go!
First, let’s talk about the things you’ll get with any of the Tile trackers.
- App: all of the Tiles will use the same highly-rated Tile app, loved by iPhone and Android users alike.
- Community Find: all Tiles benefit from Tile’s stronghold on the Bluetooth tracker U.S marketshare at a whopping 80%.
- Smart platform integrations: all of the Tiles integrate with both Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant.
- Temperature range: all of the Tiles except for the Sticker will work in temperatures from 14 to 140 degrees Fahrenheit (the Tile Sticker’s range goes up to 149 degrees Fahrenheit).
I told you that you can’t go wrong with Tile!
Now let’s move on to the differences between the Tiles, which are vast but can be summarized nicely if you’re as talented as I am.
- Ranges: the Tiles have ranges from 100 to 400 feet.
- Batteries: some of the Tiles have replaceable batteries, while some have non-replaceable batteries.
- IP ratings: while the Tile Sport and Style are hermetically sealed, some Tiles are merely dust protected.
- Sirens: the sirens range from the noise levels of a garbage disposal to a shot gun with the Tile Slim.
We’ll get into more detail later. For now, let’s talk design.
Design of the Tile Mate, Tile Slim, Tile Pro, Tile Sticker, Tile Style, and Tile Sport
Don’t you just want to eat the Tile trackers up? They’re all small, rounded squares with keyring holes, save for the Tile Slim and the Tile Sticker, intended to go in your wallet, on your keyring, or even on the back of your phone. The Tile Sticker has an adhesive on the back, making it perfect for flat surfaces that don’t have keyring holes or pockets, like an iPhone or a laptop.
All of the trackers have a nice, simple look, but my personal favorite is the Tile Style. The gold accents are great for that extra zhuzh. The slimmest tracker is the Tile Slim, hence the name. If you’re looking for something lightweight, the Tile Mate is only seven grams.
Like I said, all of the Tile trackers will work in temperatures from 14 to 140 degrees Fahrenheit, although the Sticker’s range goes up to 149. Now, maybe this is just because I’m writing this review in the dead of winter, but 14 degrees does not seem cold enough to me. Just a few days ago it was six degrees out- six! Still, you may not care about this if you’re lucky enough to live in a warm climate, but it’s definitely something to keep in mind.
Now let’s talk durability. While I hope my tracker isn’t covered in debris, knowing me this is a real possibility. That’s why I always look at a tracker’s IP rating. IP ratings determine how protected an item is from both solids and liquids. While the rating’s first number applies to solids, the second number applies to liquids.
The least protected trackers are the Tile Mate and Tile Pro, with IP ratings of 55. Still, they’re dust-protected and could handle water from a 6.3mm nozzle, so that’s pretty good. Next is the Tile Slim at 57, also dust-protected but able to handle immersion in up to one mm of water. Impressive.
But by far the most durable Tile trackers are the Tile Style and the Tile Sport. With IP ratings of 68, they are dust-tight and can be completely immersed in water. In fact, they’re hermetically sealed, which makes them as durable as humanely possible. Throw them in mud, douse them in water, sprinkle them with salt— the Tile Style and the Tile Sport aren’t stopping for anything (unless their batteries die— which brings me to my next point).
Another thing to keep in mind are the tracker’s batteries. While the Tile Mate and Tile Pro have replaceable batteries with a one-year life, the Tile Style, Tile Sticker, Tile Slim and Tile Sport have non-replaceable batteries. That means that after the battery runs out in a year, your tracker is completely useless, clearly a huge drawback. However, the Tile Slim and the Tiler Sticker’s batteries lasts for three years, after a recent update. Keep in mind that Tile’s reTile program will give you discounted prices on replacements, but this is still a bit of a hassle and not the most cost-effective solution in the world.
All of Tile’s trackers come with built-in sirens which will help you find lost items. The quietest trackers are the Tile Style and the Tile Slim, with 98-decibel sirens as loud as handheld drills. The runner-up is the Tile Mate, with an 119-decibel siren as loud as an oxygen torch, but the Tile Pro takes the cake with an 128-decibel siren. That’s about as loud as a balloon popping or peak stadium crowd noise— pretty hard to miss, if you ask me. Finally, after a recent update, the Tile Slim has a siren of 164 decibels, about as loud as a shot gun!
Note: Tile no longer says the decibel numbers of its trackers and would not provide it for the Tile Sticker.
The Tile trackers with the shortest ranges are the Tile Mate, Slim, Style and Sport with 200 foot ranges, which isn’t minimal at all. But the Tile Pro doubles that with a 400 foot range, by far the longest range I’ve seen from a Bluetooth tracker. Impressive! Unfortunately, the Tile Sticker’s range is a bit low at only 150 feet, which was surprising to me as it’s the newest of the trackers. Hopefully, Tile can update this just as they have for the Mate, Slim and Pro.
Features of the Tile Mate, Tile Slim, Tile Pro, Tile Style, and Tile Sport
Although all of Tile’s trackers differ when it comes to design, they offer the exact same features. Let me explain.
Whatever tracker you choose, its range is limited. If your tracker lands outside of your range, your app will no longer be able to detect it. Is all hope lost?
Of course not, Negative Nancy! With any Tile Tracker, you’ll be apart of Community Find. Let’s say you lost your tracker in another state. Instead of crying about it, all you have to do is mark it as lost on your Tile app. From there, every single Tile app will be able to detect it, but only you’ll know of its location. Just sit back and wait for someone to stumble into your tracker’s range. Community Find is 100% anonymous and automatic, and it really only serves to expand your network. Given that Tile controls 80% of the U.S marketshare for Bluetooth trackers, you have the best chance of finding your tracker than with any other company. Sounds good to me!
Smart Platform Integrations
All of the Tile trackers integrate with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, which is awesome if you’re already a part of either ecosystem. That means you can ask Alexa or Google to help you find your missing items, which is even easier than using your app. Ah, the beauty of modern technology!
For even more awesome features, Tile offers an optional monthly subscription package. For $2.99 a month or $29.99 a year, Tile Premium will get you:
- Smart alerts: you’ll be alerted if you leave your house without your Tile tracker.
- Free battery replacements: if you get the Tile Mate or Tile Pro, you can get battery replacements sent to you on the house.
- Location history: track where your Tiles have been in the past 30 days.
- Extended warranty: all of the trackers’ warranties will triple to three years.
- Unlimited sharing: you’ll be able to add an unlimited amount of users to your account so your friends and family can help you find things.
- Premium customer support: you’ll have access to an exclusive text line if you need help.
Keep in mind that one Tile Premium subscription covers all of your current and future Tiles, so it’s extremely cost-effective. Now, let’s move on to how you’ll communicate with your Tile, namely, the Tile app.
The Tile App
The Tile app is where you’ll find your missing items, access Community Find, see where you had your tracker last, and receive push notifications. If you get Tile Premium, it’s where you’ll add multiple users to your account, view your tracker’s location history, and contact the premium customer support line.
I’m glad to say that the Tile app has great reviews from both iPhone and Android users, with ratings of 4.5 and 4.2 from the Apple and Google Play stores, respectively.
“Fantastic device. Left my keys at the store and my phone told me the last place it saw them. I went back and stepped inside the store and they connected to my phone automatically and I could hear them ringing at the checkout counter,”
wrote Android user Michael Demoin in a five-star review.
Recap of the Tile Mate, Tile Slim, Tile Pro, Tile Style, and Tile Sport
Clearly, Tile does Bluetooth trackers well, possibly better than any of its competitors. No matter which tracker you choose, you’ll get a great app, a large community network, and integrations with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. But one tracker definitely stands out above the others. Drumroll, please…
The Tile Pro is the clear winner in my book. It has the largest range and loudest siren of any of the trackers, plus a replaceable battery. While it’s $35, about five to $10 more than the others, I think it’s worth it for its superior design.
If you’re still on the fence, I’ll make it even easier.
Pick the Tile Mate if You’d Like…
- Most affordable option: the Tile Mate costs $25, $10 less than Tile’s most expensive tracker the Tile Pro.
- Lightest: the Tile Mate is only seven grams, less than half of the weight of the Tile Pro and the Tile Sport trackers.
For more information, read our full review of the Tile Mate.
Pick the Tile Slim if you’d Like…
- Slimmest: at only 2.4mm thick, the Tile Slim is perfect to keep in your wallet.
- Loudest siren: the Slim siren is about 40 decibels higher than the Mate at 164.
To learn more, read our review of the Tile Slim.
Pick the Tile Pro if you’d Like…
- Largest range: with a range of 400 feet, the Tile Pro adds a hundred feet on to any previous Tile tracker’s range.
Want more info? Check out our review of the Tile Pro.
Pick the Tile Style if you’d Like…
- Hermetically sealed: nothing will be able to get past the Tile Style, be it liquids or solids.
- Gold accents: if you’re looking to add a little flair to your Bluetooth tracker, the Tile Style is a great option.
Pick the Tile Sport if you’d Like…
- Hermetically sealed: Like its sister, the Tile Sport is hermetically sealed with the highest possible IP rating of 68.
To learn more, check out our review of the Tile Style and Sport Combo Pack.
Pick the Tile Sticker if you’d like…
- Adhesive: The Tile Sticker is the only tracker to include a 3M adhesive on the back, making it ideal for flat surfaces made of metal or plastic.
- Higher temperature range: The Tile Sticker works in temperatures of up to 149 degrees Fahrenheit, nine degrees hotter than any of the other trackers.
- Lowest price: At $39.99 for a two-pack, the Tile Sticker is the most cost-effective.
Want to learn about more awesome Bluetooth trackers? Read our review of the best Bluetooth trackers of 2020.
Can Tile be used as a GPS tracker?
No, the Tile trackers can’t be used as GPS. Instead, they use Bluetooth to connect with the Tile app.
How does the Tile tracker work?
You will be able to find your tracker as long as you’re within its range. If you’re outside of the range, you can mark it as lost on the Tile app and wait for someone else with the app downloaded. Once someone walks into the tracker’s range, you’ll be alerted of its location. You can connect Tile trackers to your keys, wallet, phone, etc.
Is there a monthly fee for the Tile tracker?
There’s no required monthly fee to use Tile trackers. However, Tile Premium is an optional subscription service that costs either $2.99 a month or $29.99 a year, which gives you smart alerts, free battery replacements, location history, an extended warranty, unlimited sharing and premium customer support.