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As an adult with ADHD, Bluetooth trackers are a massive game-changer for me

Thank you, Tile, I'd be lost without you.
By
January 1, 2023
Tile Mate bluetooth trackers
Luke Pollack / Android Authority

To the absolute shock of nobody who has ever met me, I have been living with ADHD for my entire existence. If you don’t know what ADHD is, Psychiatry.org has a great guide on it. The short of it is I have trouble focusing on just one thing at a time and I spend a lot of time in my own head because what’s going on upstairs is a lot more interesting than reality. When your mind is moving a million miles per hour, it gets easy to get distracted. One of the side effects of this is that I lose things pretty easily. There are days when I’ll lose my wallet, phone, keys, and even my laptop all in the same 24-hour period. Yes, sadly, I said laptop.

In the past, I had a handy solution to this problem: After thirty minutes or so of wandering around looking at the ceiling, I’d ask my wife to find the missing items for me. She loved that, as you’d imagine. Nowadays, I turn to a more elegant solution, Bluetooth trackers.

There are a lot of different Bluetooth trackers on the market, though the most popular options are from Apple or Tile. Apple Airtags have gained in popularity over the years, but I stick to Tile for its versatility. While Apple only has one Airtag model, Tile has four different solutions: a Pro model, the base Tile Mate, the credit-card-sized Tile slim, and Tile Stickers. I own at least one of every type, except the Pro model. The Pro adds a few extras like a better range and a more rugged design. It is also designed to work better outdoors. In my situation, these benefits aren’t enough to justify the cost, though, as I tend to only lose things when I’m settled at home or visiting a friend’s house.

If you often have trouble finding items, a Bluetooth tracker can save time, prevent fights, and make your life just a bit easier.

One of the best things about Tile trackers begins with the easy-to-use app. It lays out all my devices in a handy grid. I simply select the product I am looking for and I hit the Find button. Immediately, the device starts ringing. The range is good enough that I can even hear it when I forget my wallet in the car. Bluetooth trackers also provide a quick alternative to Find My Phone apps. If I can’t find my phone, I’ll often grab my wife’s keys off the hook and with a simple double tap of the physical button on each tracker, I can ring my phone. This will work even if the phone’s volume is off. The phone must have Bluetooth enabled, however.

I originally bought Tile trackers for my scattered brain, but as a family of five, we’ve found that having a Bluetooth tracker on important items is a game-changer. When you have young kids, they misplace things pretty often. Maybe they are running around and knock your wallet off a table and it ends up under the couch. Sometimes they will even take things for no reason at all. For example, when my now-teen daughter was only three, we couldn’t find our keys for days. She’d placed them in a Barbie car.

Whether it’s my kids, myself, or the ghosts… having a Bluetooth tracker comes in handy. Now I get what you might be thinking: Couldn’t I just get more organized? Yes, that would certainly help, and it has. I tend to have a few designated spots where I usually leave my keys and other important items. I also tend to be very minimalist in what I keep around the house because the less clutter, the easier it is to find a lost object. By sticking to routine places to store my stuff, I find that I don’t lose things nearly as often as I used to. Still, with ADHD, I have my good and bad days. If I’m particularly distracted, things inevitably get lost.

Do you own a Bluetooth tracker?

102 votes

Although better organization, therapy, and mindfulness can all help improve ADHD, it’s nice to have a failsafe. If you lose items as much as I do, I highly recommend you pick up the Apple AirTag ($30) or one of Tile’s solid trackers.

Tile MateTile Mate
Tile Mate
Simple controls • Replaceable battery • Compact design
Android? iOS? The Tile Mate gives you the freedom to choose what you track.
The Tile Mate is the elder statesman among Bluetooth trackers, but it's not headed for retirement. It's simple to use, and replacing the long-lasting battery is a breeze. Best of all, the Tile Mate doesn't trap you in one ecosystem or another.