A product designed to find lost keys and wallets is now notoriously used for stalking. Yes, you guessed it right, the AirTags. But, in recent times, the GPS trackers have captured the mainstream media where we’ve heard report after report of people finding the clip-based sized wireless devices in coat pockets, taped under cars and aid packages.
This has raised eyebrows. But, it seems like digital stalking is a problem of the tech industry’s own creation, and the fixes for it won’t really become evident until the industry starts working together.
But, that does not mean that you should absolutely stop using these item trackers. If you are intelligent enough, you’ll not resist the idea of using an intelligent tracker to protect your most vulnerable item. But, I know that you are a wise adult looking for the best tracker on the planet that can retrieve back your lost or stolen item, in case!
It Doesn’t Really Matter Whether You’re Using Apple AirTag Or A GPS Tracker. All I Want Is That You Have The Best Device To Resurrect Your Lost Item Back!
The Cellular Network Infrastructure Becomes Bottlenecked And Slow When You Get A Hundred Thousand People In One Area 📱
I discovered later that if you use the Internet or any kind of data application on your phone, it becomes tediously slow. It gets extremely hard pulling up the app on my phone, loading the map data, and getting a refreshed GPS location of the tracker except for maybe twenty minutes or so.
I figured that both my phone and tracker had trouble connecting to the nearby towers to send and receive data. Frustrating right? Well, I learned that in a large crowd, a Bluetooth item tracker might be a better option since it connects directly to your phone rather than going through the internet. Sure, the range might be smaller, but the location would refresh more often.
In order for the cellular tracker to work properly, you need to have a network in the area that isn’t overloaded in order for the cellular tracker to work properly. So, places and events like celebrations of lights, fairgrounds, concerts, and sporting events might have the same issue.
Weird Right? Obviously, these are the exact situations where you would ideally want to use a tracker on your child, pet, or belongings. In places like Disneyland or similar where there are thousands and thousands of people, a GPS tracker would work much better because they would have a local infrastructure to support those crowds and lead to better Internet connections overall.
All in all, I have a few thoughts on this. A GPS tracker essentially provides the same functionality you can get from Apple’s Find My network. You can get semi-live location tracking refreshed every few minutes. Generally, it’s going to work better than AirTags because using the cellular network you get a much broader range of tracks instead of relying on a mesh network of Bluetooth devices from other users.
Tracking Your Item’s Location: Cellular GPS Tracker Vs Apple AirTag
AirTags are quite versatile because of the Find My network and billions of Apple devices on Earth. The iPhones pick up the signal of AirTag and communicate anonymously and securely back to your Find My app. This makes the range of AirTag infinitely powerful and unlimited.
But, that won’t help you if you’re in the countryside or a sparsely populated area, for example. So, if you are in a field or wilderness and trying to track something, you would have a tough time doing that with an AirTag because there won’t be people carrying iPhones.
The AirTag is a real key finder but not a security tracker
But, with a cellular tracker like Geozilla, you get that consistently refreshed location every couple of minutes as long as it is in the range of the cellular network. Obviously, there are limits to how far you can track this thing, but it’s undoubtedly a step up from a Bluetooth tracker. You have to be willing to pay a few hundred dollars each year for the service plan because any device that connects to the cell network has to pay a fee.
The advantages and disadvantages of an Apple AirTag
- Small and handy
- Fits comfortably in your pocket or on your keychain, so it’s always at hand
- Easy to set up and use
- A year-long battery
- Works with iOS only
- Limited to Bluetooth signals and nearby Apple device network, which may render the tracker ineffective in less populated rural areas
- No continuous tracking in real-time
The advantages and disadvantages of a GPS tracker compared to the Apple AirTag
- Different models are available for different applications, which means better design and form factor
- Tracking is possible anywhere, regardless of the location of the tracked object
- Real-time tracking possible
- More expensive to purchase
- Ongoing costs through SIM connectivity and IoT platform
With an Air tag, you can get live guidance right to your item if you are in the range, and you can ping it to make a sound, so you can more easily find it. But, Apple has discouraged the use of AirTag to track people and puts some safeguards in place to avoid evil intentions.
But, cellular GPS trackers are more discreet and will not notify nearby phone users in the same way. This is great because you know where your GPS tracker is, but others don’t. The only other downside I think is that you need to charge the battery of the GPS tracker every few days, unlike AirTag, which works the whole year.
I think that we should go for the GPS tracker as the first layer of security and add-on an AirTag to it, in case either one gets lost or malfunctions. Let me know what you think of it!