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Tile Slim (2022)
Retail price: $34.99
What we like
What we don't like
Tile Slim (2022)
We all have things that we tend to lose. Luckily for all of us, there are a growing number of Bluetooth trackers available for just about every situation. This time, we’re checking out a way to keep your wallet, or even your favorite book or jacket close at hand with Tile’s latest card-shaped tracker. Here is our Tile Slim (2022) review.
What you need to know about the Tile Slim (2022)
- Tile Slim (1-pack): $34.99 / €34.99 / £29.99
- Tile Slim (2-pack): $59.99
The Tile Slim is the most unique member of the Tile tracking family, and it’s back with a 2022 update. What makes the Slim stand out is that it’s the only Tile that does not physically attach to your object. Instead, you have to slide it in a pocket, tuck it into a slot, or use it as a bookmark. It’s also the Tile to receive the fewest changes in the latest batch of product refreshes from the company.
While the more traditional Tiles like the Mate and Pro take on the Galaxy SmartTag and Apple AirTag, the Tile Slim is in a class of its own. Its closest rival is the Chipolo Card, which is similar with some extra smart features on top. Chipolo’s Card has another advantage over the Tile Slim (2022) in that it’s more affordable at just $30, however, the smaller user base decreases its tracking potential and it’s limited to a single-year battery.
Whether in a wallet, coat pocket, or book, the Tile Slim thrives in tight spaces.
If you’ve read any of our other Tile reviews, you’ll know that Tile Premium is a must-have. It costs $2.99 per month or $29.99 for a year, and it adds Smart Alerts which provide automated notifications to your phone when you get out of range. Tile Premium also adds 30 days of location history, and up to $100 in lost item reimbursements. The more expensive Tile Premium Protect boosts your coverage to $1,000 and costs $99.99 per year.
The Tile Slim takes after its more classically-shaped siblings when it comes to onboard controls. You simply squeeze the Tile logo once to silence your ring or squeeze it twice if you want to track down your phone. Now, let’s get into the everyday experience.
It should be noted that Tile is set to be acquired by Life360 — a company that has allegedly sold user data while carrying loose privacy rules. The sale is expected to be completed in the first quarter of 2022. The existing Tile team will remain in place, and Life360 has said it has no plans to sell Tile user data. Nevertheless, it’s something to be aware of before investing in the Tile ecosystem.
One of Tile’s most significant changes heading into 2022 is the brand-new “Lost & Found” feature. It incorporates the rear-mounted QR code seen above to make finding lost items easier. You’ll have to provide Tile with your phone number, but this allows people to contact you if they find your missing valuables.
Overall, the Tile Slim hasn’t changed too much physically. It’s still the same size as a credit card and just about a tenth of an inch thick. However, it now packs a robust IP67 rating for dust and water resistance, which is in line with the rest of Tile’s lineup. Of course, the Slim has long been the most water-resistant option thanks to the non-replaceable battery, but it’s nice to see an official rating. I, for one, am glad that Tile didn’t push a redesign on the Slim (2022) like its other tiles. It’s hard to see how it could get any slimmer, and the matte black finish looks great. It’s also by far the lightest of all the Tiles, weighing in at just 2.5g.
The Tile Slim offers three years of battery life, which is impressive given the increased Bluetooth range. It can now reach up to 250 feet, compared to 200 feet on the previous generation. Whether you’ll actually achieve that range is another matter — it’s not easy unless you live in a wide-open area.
Tile gave its Slim (2022) a nice Bluetooth kick, and the official IP67 rating is the cherry on top.
Long-range tracking or not, I still love that the Tile embraces both Android and iOS for support. It’s easy to log in on both platforms, so you can keep track of your wallet no matter which phone is in your pocket. The app interface is identical, too, which cuts down on any potential learning curve.
We’ve previously taken issue with Tile’s anti-stalking options, or rather, the complete lack of them, but now Tile is moving to address the issue. A new feature in the Tile app called Scan and Secure lets you search for unregistered trackers on your person. Unfortunately, the feature won’t launch until early 2022. It’s also nowhere near as comprehensive as Apple’s anti-stalking measures, but it’s at least a step in the right direction.
What’s not so good?
It’s hard to tell whether three years of battery life is a blessing or a curse. Of course, if Tile had added a replaceable battery to the Tile Slim, it’d probably have had to make it thicker. However, right now, you have to replace the entire tracker any time the battery dies. Granted, the plastic itself may show wear and tear by the time the battery kicks it, but it’s still a drawback considering Tile’s reTile service (discounted replacements) does not apply to trackers with three years of promised battery life.
One thing I would have liked to see on the new Tile Slim is a punch hole. Although the Slim is meant to slide into wallets and pockets, it would be nice to have a way to physically attach the card. If it slips out of your bag or wallet, you might end up only finding the tracker instead of your lost valuable. All you have to do is squeeze the Tile logo, so there’s probably space for a hole somewhere.
There's no way to attach the Tile Slim (2022) to anything, so if it falls out, you may be out of luck.
Tile doesn’t have as many users as Apple or Samsung, so you have to rely on Amazon Sidewalk for an extra boost to its tracking ecosystem. It brings nearby Ring and Echo devices into the mix, though Amazon users can opt-out of the feature and leave you back at square one. Unfortunately, Amazon Sidewalk is also limited to US users, so everyone else is relying solely on Tile’s network.
Considering the price, it’d also have also been great to see ultra-wideband (UWB) support for precision and/or augmented reality tracking, as we saw on the AirTag. Those features, however, are being reserved for the Tile Ultra due in 2022.
Tile Slim (2022) review: Should I buy it?
If you want to squash the nasty habit of losing your wallet or a favorite jacket, the Tile Slim (2022) might be for you. It offers support for both Android and iOS, and it’s easy to slip into tight spaces thanks to its slender design and lightweight build. While the Tile Slim matches the Tile Pro on price, it’ll be worth the cost for the unique design to many users.
Those of you committed to either the Apple or Samsung ecosystems may find that the AirTag ($29) or Galaxy SmartTag ($29) are a better fit. Samsung’s option offers a more traditional design while the AirTag offers precision tracking through UWB support. The last question you’ll have to ask yourself is whether you need Tile Premium or not. It adds Smart Alerts and product reimbursement for $29.99 per year, but the Tile Slim (2022) doesn’t get free battery replacements.
See also: The best Apple AirTag alternatives
Overall, the Tile Slim (2022) is the best card-shaped Bluetooth tracker around. There aren’t many direct competitors, and it’s hard to argue with three years of battery life and an IP67 rating. You can always save a little money when you buy more than one, so start picking your favorite valuables to track.