If you've ever lost your phone, keys, wallet, or, yes, even your dog, a Bluetooth tracker is what you need to keep tabs on all the items you can't live without. As the holiday season approaches, Bluetooth trackers also make great gifts for yourself or a loved one -- since even the most sharp-minded individuals lose an item every once in a while. Plus, some are even on sale ahead of Black Friday.
Also: The best Black Friday deals: Amazon, Best Buy, Walmart, and more
If you don't know what to gift to a special someone, a Bluetooth tracker is a great investment since, ultimately, it is up to the person to choose how they want to utilize it. Whether it is to track your furry friends, your child's favorite stuffed animal, or your checked luggage, Bluetooth trackers have endless possibilities for use. They are also exceptionally easy to set up and even easier to use.
The question is, which Bluetooth tracker should you buy? With dozens of brands, sizes, and price points available, finding the ideal tracker requires a bit of information tracking (no pun intended). Fortunately, I've compared the very best Bluetooth-enabled offerings on the market and rounded up my favorites below.
Also: 7 ways AirTags can simplify your life (beyond tracking keys)
The best Bluetooth trackers of 2023
- Precision tracking
- Find My network is dependable
- Replaceable battery
- Designed only for Apple users (not for Android phones)
- Accessory required to attach to certain items
- Easily scratched
Apple AirTag Features: Precision Finding | Battery rated to last one year | Find My Network can track down wallets, keys, and more
The Apple AirTag hit the market in 2021 and has kept its foot on the pedal since. The coin-sized tracker only works with Apple devices like the iPhone, iPad, and MacBook, but it does so seamlessly and effectively. By making use of its built-in U1 ultra wideband chip (for Precision Finding) and Apple's extensive Find My network, the AirTag can track down keys, wallets, bags, and anything else the trinket can fit into.
The AirTag's battery is rated to last one year and can be replaced with another CR2032 unit afterward. One AirTag sells for $29, and a four-pack is priced at $99. However, you can currently find the four-pack for $87 ahead of Black Friday at Amazon and Walmart.
Review: Apple AirTag
- 400 foot range
- Water resistant
- Compatible with iOS and Android devices
- No ultra wideband precision tracking
- Slightly larger than other tags
- On the pricey side
Tile Pro Features: 400-foot tracking range | Features loud alarm | IP67 water protection
It's easy to get carried away with the "Pro" moniker. What exactly does that entail? For the Tile Pro, it means a greater tracking range (400 feet), loud alarm, and IP67 rating to keep the tag safe from splashes and rain. For reference, competing trackers like the Apple AirTag and Samsung SmartTag can be detected within 200 feet via Bluetooth -- and the Tile doubles that.
The Tile Pro looks a lot like a key fob, and you might be okay with that. The size is warranted as it's equipped with a larger-than-average speaker for a more discernible alarm and a replaceable CR2032 battery. It also features a hole at the top of the tile so you can easily attach the tag to your keychain.
A tag sells for $35, which isn't cheap but well worth the money if you're an iOS or Android user who wants the farthest tracking range. It's among the best Tile trackers available.
- Sleek design ideal for wallets
- Alarm feature
- Apple Find My integration
- No ultra wideband tracking
- Battery isn't replaceable
- Not compatible with Android
Chipolo Card Spot Features: Connects to Apple's Find My Network | Compact size for easy portability | 200-foot tracking range
Chipolo's just-released Card Spot is shaped like a credit card, connects to Apple's Find My network, and gets my pick for the best Bluetooth wallet tracker. While traditional, coin-shaped finders can also keep your wallet in check, they often create a bulge that makes stashing the accessory cumbersome. The Card Spot is designed to live in your wallet, measuring a thickness of 0.09 inches -- about the same as two credit cards stacked together.
The other key feature is Apple's Find My Network integration. By dialing into the expansive, crowdsourced ecosystem, the Chipolo can be tracked within a 200-foot range via Bluetooth and virtually anywhere else via nearby Apple devices. A card sells for $35 and fits in most wallet types.
Review: Chipolo Card Spot
- Real-time location tracking
- Panic button for urgent situations
- Charger included
- Requires subscription plan
- Needs frequent charging
Jiobit Smart Tag Features: Real-time tracking | Compact design allows clipping on belt, collar, or backpack | Always-on connectivity
Besides locating keys and wallets, Bluetooth trackers make for handy-dandy gadgets to keep your child or pet under surveillance. If you're able to spend a little more for added safety and security features, look to the Jiobit Smart Tag, which goes for $150, and is currently on sale for $130 at Jiobit's site. The Jiobit can be clipped onto a belt, collar, or backpack, and provides always-on connectivity and real-time location tracking.
This is all done via Jiobit's dedicated cloud subscription, which does require a monthly fee. At the basic level ($8.99 a month), you'll gain access to the standard, real-time tracking features. But by paying more -- especially for the Protect plan ($14.99 a month for the no-contract option), Jiobit gives you access to location histories, phone alerts, and unlimited location-sharing with other users.
Protect plan users can also take advantage of the tracker's built-in emergency button. When pressed, your phone will receive a ping and be given the option to call 911.
- Doubles as smart home button
- Integrated speaker
- Rugged design
- Only compatible with Galaxy phones
- Bulky design
Samsung Galaxy SmartTag2 Features: Works with smart home tools | Features a loudspeaker | Scratch-resistant design
Like the AirTag and iPhone, the SmartTag2 is at its best when paired with a Samsung Galaxy smartphone. The Bluetooth tracker is thinner and slicker than its predecessor, has a bigger keyring, and is enforced with a metal insert to protect against rugged use. Beyond design, the SmartTag 2 features a longer battery life of up to 700 days, with a new Power Saving Mode, as well as a new Lost Mode, and an improved Compass View.
Unlike the aforementioned picks, the SmartTag2 doubles as a trigger for smart home automation. You can press the tag to turn on lights, kickstart air conditioning, or even open the garage door. However, it's only compatible with appliances that fall under the SmartThings ecosystem, which is more limited than what Alexa and the Apple Home Kit can work with.
Also: The best Samsung phones
Still, the Galaxy SmartTag2 is a formidable Bluetooth tracker with a loudspeaker, a replaceable battery, and a rugged build that can handle a bump or two. The tracker sells for $30, but we've seen it go for much less, making it a great value buy for Samsung users.
Apple's AirTag is the best for its Precision Finding, long battery life, and access to the dependable Apple's Find My Network feature.
We chose other great options to fit a variety of needs. If you want a long-distance tracker, the Tile Pro's 400-foot range is fantastic. Meanwhile, if you need real-time location tracking, the JioBit Smart Tag is a wise choice for parents.
This table can help you compare the best Bluetooth trackers based on pricing and special features:
Precision Finding, one-year battery life
400-foot tracking range, IP67 water protection
Chipolo Card Spot
Compact size fits in most wallets, 200-foot tracking range
Jiobit Smart Tag
Always-on connectivity, real-time tracking
Samsung Galaxy SmartTag
Compatible with smart home devices, scratch-resistant design
*Lowest price at the time of writing. Please note that prices may vary based on retailer and available promotions, sales, or discounts.
When shopping for a Bluetooth tracker, the main factor you should consider is compatibility. The AirTag and Chipolo Card Spot, for example, only function with Apple-made devices. For more versatility, we'd recommend looking into Tile's Bluetooth offerings.
It also helps to know what you're tracking. For keys and smaller items, coin-shaped trackers will do the trick. For larger belongings such as wallets and passports, consider card-shaped options.
Choose this Bluetooth tracker...
If you want…
Best overall for precise location tracking and a battery that'll last a year.
Long-distance tracking with a range of 400 feet and a loud alarm.
Chipolo Card Spot
A sleek, Apple-integrated tracker for your wallet.
Jiobit Smart Tag
Real-time location tracking and a panic alert button.
Samsung Galaxy SmartTag
A Samsung-compatible tracker that can double as a smart home button.
The best picks tick all four boxes and then some. They're also distinguished by unique selling points that make each one ideal for a specific type of user. That way, if you want a Bluetooth tracker on your pet's collar or need one that works with your Samsung ecosystem, we have the choices for you. When selecting the best Bluetooth trackers, we considered the key factors listed below.
- Precision: When selecting the best Bluetooth trackers, we considered how accurate and consistent the following devices were at finding our items.
- Battery life: What's the point in investing in a Bluetooth tracker when it can just die on you during an essential time? Within the list, we considered battery life and made a note of each device's durability, so you can make your pick with confidence.
- Speaker volume: Nothing is worse than knowing where a device is but being unable to see it. That is why we consider the speaker volume on each of these Bluetooth trackers, so next time you can't see something, you can at least hear it.
- Tracking range: Bluetooth devices, such as these trackers, rely on signal strength (RSSI) to estimate the locations of the device or items. We considered the range to determine how reliable these devices would be in a time of need.
Most Bluetooth trackers come with batteries that can either be swapped out or recharged. For offerings that don't have replaceable batteries, manufacturers often incentivize trade-ins by offering discounted renewals. Chipolo, for one, will sell you a new Card Spot at 50% off when you trade in your existing tracker.
Many batteries can last between one and two years. Your manufacturer will have this information available in the owner's manual and on the website, so you can plan when to replace it.
A Bluetooth tracker attaches to a personal item (think wallet, backpack, even belt). Next, you connect it through the manufacturer's app to enable location tracking, which you can view on your phone. Bluetooth trackers have a limited range with an average of 200 to 300 feet. You must be within the signal range to receive accurate information. And some items, such as Wi-Fi speakers, might interfere with the signal, so be sure to use the devices in a clear area to receive the strongest signal.
The Bluetooth trackers above are my top five recommendations, but the following devices can also keep your belongings in check:
Best water-resistant alternative
Chipolo Bluetooth tracker for iOS and Android
This water-resistant tracker emits a 120dB sound to help you find missing items quickly.
Best budget alternative
Tile Mate (2022)
This tracker offers an exceptional range of 250 feet and works with Android and Apple devices.
Best wallet alternative
Tile Slim (2022)
The compact size allows you to slide it into your wallet, purse, or bag with ease.