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Samsung beat Apple’s AirTags to the punch with its own upgraded item tracker

April 8th, 2021 at 11:35 AM
Galaxy SmartTag+

At the beginning of the year, Samsung announced its own Tile-rivaling Bluetooth trackers alongside the Galaxy S21. Samsung’s Galaxy SmartTag is slightly thicker than the Tile, but serves the same purpose: Attaching to your stuff and tracking it with Bluetooth so that you don’t misplace it. Less than three months have passed since the debut of the SmartTag, but this week, Samsung decided that it was time to announce the sequel.

In a press release on its website Thursday morning, Samsung revealed the Galaxy SmartTag+. As the name suggests, these trackers are even more advanced than the original models. Unlike the first SmartTag, the SmartTag+ is equipped with Bluetooth Low-Energy (BLE) and ultra-wideband (UWB) technology, which means it can find your lost items with even greater accuracy. But the most exciting upgrade is the addition of an AR Finder.

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As Samsung explains, the Galaxy SmartTag+ is capable of using augmented reality (AR) technology that will help to visually guide you to your missing stuff in the environment through your phone’s display. Samsung says that the AR Finder features a simple interface that will show you exactly how far away you are from the tracked item and will point you in the right direction. Once you’re close enough, you can make the item produce a loud ring.

“UWB is a true game changer, making it possible to lock onto the position of an object with much greater precision,” said KJ Kim, EVP and Head of Mobile R&D Office, Mobile Communications Business at Samsung Electronics. “That’s why we’re continuing to expand UWB throughout the Galaxy ecosystem, finding new ways to leverage this technology to help make people’s everyday lives easier and more convenient.”

The other significant upgrade is the move to Bluetooth Low-Energy connectivity, which combines with the Galaxy device network to allow users to find their devices from much further away. By opting into SmartThings Find on the SmartThings app, SmartTag+ owners will have the option to enable their Galaxy phone or tablet to help others find their lost tags and devices. If you report a missing item, nearly Galaxy devices that have opted into the program will alert the server to their location and send you a notification. That way, even if your lost item is miles away, the network and the new technology will still be able to work together to help pinpoint its location on the map.

The one major caveat here is that the Galaxy SmartTag+ only works with Samsung devices. You can’t track your items with a SmartTag or a SmartTag+ if you own an iPhone or any other brand of Android phone or tablet. Also, many of the features of the SmartTag+ require Samsung devices with UWB technology, so you’re limited to newer devices like the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra, Galaxy S21+, Galaxy S21 Ultra, and Galaxy Z Fold 2.

Samsung says that the Galaxy SmartTag+ will be available on April 16th for $39.99.

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Jacob started covering video games and technology in college as a hobby, but it quickly became clear to him that this was what he wanted to do for a living. He currently resides in New York writing for BGR. His previously published work can be found on TechHive, VentureBeat and Game Rant.




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