Review: Chipolo Is a Cute and Functional Bluetooth Tracking Tag

One of the best use cases of the "Internet of Things" is the ability to track your valuables. Thanks to low-power Bluetooth, you can have a Bluetooth tracking tag attached to your purse, briefcase, wallet, etc., and not worry about changing batteries every month. The Chipolo ($29.95) goes even further. The included coin-size battery lasts for six months, and to be safe, the company includes a second battery, for a total of one year of use. This is a nice touch, because such batteries aren't as easy to find as AA and AAA batteries.

Chipolo

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Another nice touch is the choice of colors. This is not just about style. Tanks to the full rainbow of colors (pink, red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple, and even black and white) users can color-code their items. In fact, that's where the Chipolo system shines, when you have many of them. They are sold individually for $29.95, which is on the high-end, but they are cheaper when you purchase two or more, and sell for about $20 each when purchasing four.

Chipolo

The Chipolo Bluetooth tracking tag does even more than traditional tracking. The well-designed app even tells you the temperature of the tracker's last-known location. The device can function as a remote control for your smartphone's camera, just by shaking the Chipolo and using the camera feature built-in to the Chipolo app. This is something that you might pay $20 for without the tracking feature. The manufactuer is even encouraging users to tag their selfies with #ChipoloSelfie. You can also pair a single Chipolo with two smartphones concurrently, making it easier to find an item. For example, both a husband and wife can track the same set of car keys. There is a web app as well that can ring your phone or send it a message, almost like Apple's Find My iPhone.

Pros

  • Wide variety of color choices
  • Solid, attractive design
  • Six-month battery with spare included
  • Cheaper in volume
  • Shutter release feature
  • Useful app with Find My iPhone style features

Cons

  • Expensive when purchased individually

Final Verdict

The Chipolo Bluetooth tracking tag offers a solid, attractive design and works with a companion app, which is quite useful and is also attractive.

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Todd Bernhard's picture

Todd Bernhard is a bestselling (6+ million downloads) award-winning (AARP, About.com, BestAppEver.com, Digital Hollywood, and Verizon) developer and founder of NoTie.NET, an app developer specializing in Talking Ringtone apps including AutoRingtone. And his profile photo is of the last known sighting of Mr. Bernhard wearing a tie, circa 2007!

An iPhone is almost always attached to his hip or in his pocket, but over the years, Mr. Bernhard has owned an Apple Newton, a Motorola Marco, an HP 95LX, a Compaq iPaq, a Palm Treo, and a Nokia e62. In addition to writing for iPhone Life, Mr. Bernhard has written for its sister publications, PocketPC Magazine and The HP Palmtop Paper.