A year ago, a few friends started sporting these white squares on their keychains. They had supported an innovative crowdfunded project for a Bluetooth tracking device and were now happily using it to help them keep track of their keys by using the app on their phone and the loud ring emitted from the Tile to find them when lost. As someone who has spent a ridiculous amount hunting for my keys, I finally bought my own Tile at the Maker Faire in May. I have not lost my keys once since that day, reclaiming probably hours of my life that I would have spent stomping from room to room, yelling at my lost keys, which were probably too scared to come out of hiding.
When Tile challenged me to find new uses for their product, I was on it. My house is clean and I think I’m organized, but we lose a lot of everyday stuff all the time. My only regret is that they don’t make a Tile small enough to stick to my sunglasses. That would be genius.
This is how we Tile:
1. My Wallet
I lose my wallet inside my house all the time and there are few things as panic inducing as that split second thought of having to cancel all of my credit cards. It’s not even that I’m worried about the cash, it’s all of the phone calls that I dread most.
Whether it’s changing purses and not remembering which one I used last, putting the wallet in my desk drawer to keep it out of the way, or my favorite, when I leave it in a reusable grocery bag after I’ve tossed it into the bag before carrying all of my groceries into the house. I lose my wallet a lot.
2. The Dog
It’s not so much that she’s a runner, but she’s very curious, and she’s especially curious about finding a way out of our backyard. We have a big yard and the Tile range can be pushed to nearly 100 feet. Obviously, if she broke free into the front, the 100 feet wouldn’t cut it, but I feel better knowing it would help in our search and we could do a community appeal to get help from other Tile users.
3. My Camera
Misplacing my camera causes at least as much panic as when I can’t find my wallet. The good news is that I rarely misplace my camera, but things get complicated and chaotic sometimes when working, and I may put my camera down and turn my back. Because so much rides on my camera, losing it would be a hardship.
4. The Boy’s Jacket
This one felt like a stroke of genius. Not only is my son notorious for losing his jackets at school, he always manages to lose them on the first day he wears them. They end up in other kids’ cubbies or tossed over a tree stump at school. He lost a brand new raincoat at school in kindergarten and it was turned into his cubby in a different classroom on the last day of first grade. We have no idea who or where it was for over a year and a half.
He starts out wearing his jacket in the morning, then strips it off, tossing it aside where ever he is, which is usually running around campus. It happened with his jacket this year, again on it’s first wearing, but we searched like crazy people and when it was found, it was Tiled up so that it never happens again.
5. My Laptop Charger
When traveling, I fear leaving behind my umbilical cord-lifeline-laptop charger. That’s true, but it’s not the reason I stuck a Tile to my charger. Despite having multiple labels brightly bearing my name, people in my family steal my charger. They claim it “accidentally” was put with their stuff or that they confused it with theirs, but this thing moves and I spend a lot of time looking for it, with the added frenzy of searching with a dangerously low battery level. The Tile on the charger works like a car alarm: no one has come near it since I added this deterrent. Hallelujah!
Thanks to Tile, I’ve reclaimed about three million hours of time normally lost to searching, hunting, pleading, asking why me, yelling, threatening, and ultimately embarrassment when I find the lost item within three inches from me. Only my wallet has been misplaced since adding these Tiles and it was found in less than one minute after I looked on the app to see the last known location. This is a great gift item for all of the people on your list who, like me, spends a ridiculous amount of their day searching for lost things. Maybe it’s a teenager, maybe it’s a grandparent, or maybe it’s simply someone with too much going on to always put their laptop charger away in a top secret location that they will not forget within minutes. This is a winner.