Sprint takes on Tile with a new Tracker

Have Sprint and worried about losing things? The carrier is happy to sell you a tracker.

Eli Blumenthal Senior Editor
Eli Blumenthal is a senior editor at CNET with a particular focus on covering the latest in the ever-changing worlds of telecom, streaming and sports. He previously worked as a technology reporter at USA Today.
Expertise 5G, mobile networks, wireless carriers, phones, tablets, streaming devices, streaming platforms, mobile and console gaming,
Eli Blumenthal
2 min read

Sprint's new Tracker is a Tile competitor. 


Sprint is getting into the tracker game. Called "Tracker + Safe & Found," the fourth largest wireless carrier is introducing a new "matchbook-size" physical tracker that attaches to items such as keys, backpacks, bikes and luggage (with a dog-collar option available as well). The device combines with Sprint's LTE network and the Safe & Found app to provide real-time monitoring for phones or tablets or from a web browser.

Sprint will charge $2.50 per month (for 24 months) for the physical tracker, with service running an extra $5 per month (when on AutoPay). All told, the $180 price (after 24 months of payments) is significantly higher than the current one-time $30 cost of a Tile Pro tracker, though Tile's product relies on Bluetooth for tracking. 


Sprint's new Tracker can help keep track of pets. 


The Tile Pro's battery is replaceable and doesn't need to be recharged, Sprint's Tracker, which is water- and dust-resistant, uses LTE and Wi-Fi in addition to GPS for a more accurate, real-time connection. The more powerful connection does have a trade-off in power, requiring users to recharge the battery.

Battery life is rated for between 3 and 10 days, with Sprint saying that the app will notify users when the battery drops below 15% to ensure the device can be recharged. 

Sprint's device has a speaker built-in, like Tile, for helping locate missing objects while the app lets you set up geofences for alerts when a child, pet or object ventures outside a preapproved radius. A light sensor allows for the device to be thrown in a suitcase or bag, letting you know if that bag has been opened. 

The company is the latest carrier to offer a tracker, following rivals Verizon and AT&T

Verizon's tracker, called the Verizon Smart Locator, costs a one-time charge of $100, with service running $3 per month (though a current promotion will see Verizon waive the fee after activation for the first year). 

AT&T and Samsung have partnered on a SmartThings tracker that currently sells for a one-time charge of $85, with one year of LTE service included. After one year, however, service will be $5 per month or $50 for the year. 

The monitoring space is expected to get more crowded, with Apple also rumored to be prepping its own Tile-like tracker to work with its new Find My app.