TrackR Pixel: What makes umbilical cord between smartphone and keybund

There is a relatively endless range of Bluetooth tags. A small tracker that sticks or sticks to things so you do not lose them. TrackR Pixel is one of them and we had a hand at the IFA to convince ourselves that we really need it.

Although the TrackR is finally attachable to everything you do not want to lose, the most important function first is to use a small loop or adhesive pad. An umbilical cord between key and telephone. The TrackR pixel is almost ideal. You connect it via the app in the smartphone via Bluetooth, gives the pixel its own name and this is all quite uncomplicated. In its small, inconspicuous plastic case, the thing acts upright enough to hang on the key, and who cares when it gets a few scratches.

The Bluetooth connection is typically about 10 meters, so if you remove your key more than 10 meters from the smartphone, the small pixel starts to beep and flash. This is useful if you never want to leave the house without a phone, but even if you do not want to forget the key. Of course, you can easily locate even the most sturdy stays in sofas, because a pressure in the app is enough and it already beeps and flashes. Even if you are looking for your phone, but the key in your hand is no problem. One presses on the pixel button and already one gets a shouting notification on the mobile phone. Sound is adjustable.

The app also uses AGPS and tells one where it last had connection with the pixel. This means you should lose the key on the way, you know where to start. Interesting is Obendrein the “Crowd Locate” function, as other TrackR users can update the position of their own pixels (or other TrackR models) over it. No, they themselves do not see the thing in the app, of course.

How secure this is, we leave it to a resourceful hacker, 100% secure and encrypted says the info for granted. With Bluetooth 4.0, we doubt? As a bonus feature, there are WiFi safe zones so that each time you disconnect the Bluetooth umbilical cord, the blink starts when your own apartment is slightly larger than a Bluetooth network. But then the main function would be gone.

These darned 10 meters make a TrackR like pixels but really especially useful for things that you always want to hold together. Key, telephone, wallet. For animals in the garden that is already too few and few other things are so tied together or frequently searched, with the exception perhaps of the extinct species of the remote control. The battery is a typical button cell (CR2016), so in principle easily interchangeable (one is to get a replacement battery for free, but the postage is not worth it). However, it has not been possible to turn off the back. Usually she should hold about 1 year, afterwards I have to try it with more violence.

Whether or not Crowd-Locate really works depends on how many TrackR users are in the area, but even if it is – as in Berlin – perhaps a few hundred, the probability of finding something again is not exactly great its at a 10 meter radius.

In principle, such a TrackR pixel for the few above-mentioned fields of application is a practical idea, the implementation very simple and clear, the setting possibilities (one can switch off everything) well only the price with (presumably) 25 euros a bit high. In fact, after the first shot, the settings of the pixel were lost and I had to set it up again. This does not create much trust. The range is somewhat small for the main function (umbilical cord) and forces one (depending on the apartment) to position the key somehow in the middle, otherwise it will be random. A further disadvantage is the connection speed. Once Bluetooth is interrupted, it sometimes takes more than a minute until the devices are reconnected.

Reliability would be one of the main arguments for such a Bluetooth tag. One wants to set it up one time and then forget, until the Klingelei. I am after two days with the TrackR pixel not really sure whether this is true, although it has always been so far, when I have left the house without keys or without a phone. In the former, however, it might be too late. However, an effect occurs that makes such a thing surprisingly useful. A TrackR educates you almost to pay more attention to the position but also the presence of things you always need.

With Bluetooth 4.0, a TrackR still seems to be in the starting holes of its real usefulness. In the Bluetooth 5.0 era with greatly extended ranges and special IoT functionalities, such tracers could fulfill all their promises very soon.

PS: The predecessor, TrackR Bravo in aluminum, has almost exclusively 1-star reviews on Amazon. This is partly because he was massively advertised to be somehow a great tool against Autodiebe, which should only be in the most remote exception coincidence and fortunately in the FAQ is rather denied, since he has no GPS, let alone a line into the net , The TrackR pixel has actually the same functions, but additionally a flashing LED light and a range for the range certainly better plastic, which makes him look quite cheap, although it costs only 5 euros less.

Tracy

Tracy

Always on the move… Love to blog, write about smartphones, technology and telecoms. I also like to snowboard, when I have the time :p I’ll be around for a while so, be prepared.

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