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The Apple AirTags Rival, Samsung’s SmartTag, Has Just Leaked

The Samsung Galaxy SmartTag will assist you in locating misplaced items.

Apple AirTags has been in development for years, but despite being “done and ready” for some time, Apple has yet to formally acknowledge their existence, let alone provide a release date.

Now, it appears that Samsung may have beaten Apple to the punch with its hardware tracker, which could be released alongside the Galaxy S21 phones. The Samsung Galaxy SmartTag has been spotted on the certification site NCC, and the specs and leaked images show a device that bears more than a passing resemblance to the Tile Pro in both form and function.

Tile has carved out a neat little niche for itself with Bluetooth accessories that clip to other devices to track them down. If you’re within range, your phone can play a loud digital tune to help you locate the missing item. If you are out of range, you can report the device as lost, and the Tile community will begin searching for your property anonymously. If someone using the app passes by your missing Tile, their location will be sent to you so you can continue the search in person. According to the company, 90% of Tiles marked as lost are eventually discovered by the community (opens in new tab).

While the SmartTag does resemble the SmartTag — right down to the keyring hole in the corner — it’s unclear how much of that functionality will be replicated by Samsung or Apple’s trackers. But we do know that the Samsung Galaxy SmartTag will use Bluetooth, a departure from the company’s previous product of this type, the SmartThings Tracker, which used LTE for hunting in 2018.

Meanwhile, Apple AirTags will reportedly use Ultra Wideband technology, which debuted in the iPhone 11 family and is now available in the iPhone 12 lineup. The HomePod mini and Apple Watch Series 6 both use UWB. While this method may have performance advantages, it does mean that AirTags will be limited to products already in the Apple ecosystem, whereas Bluetooth-based trackers are available to almost anyone due to the technology’s widespread adoption.

Given the Galaxy SmartTag’s appearance on the NCC certification site, it stands to reason that it’s nearing release, and it wouldn’t be surprising if it appeared alongside the Samsung Galaxy S21 smartphones, which are expected to launch on January 14. If 91mobiles’ sources are correct, the price will be Rs 1,300, which translates to around $18 in the United States.

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