Why it matters: Tile is a find-my-device service that works similarly to Apple’s AirTags, but is platform-agnostic and predates Apple’s product by several years. However, Tile has started to add anti-stalking features only after stalking became a serious problem with AirTags.
This week, Tile announced a new feature that lets users of its app scan for unfamiliar Tile fobs or Tile-enabled products traveling near them. Essentially it works like one of the safety features in Apple’s AirTags.
The new “Scan and Secure” feature can be used by anyone who has downloaded Tile’s iOS or Android app and doesn’t require a Tile account. Upon first downloading the app, the scan feature can be seen at the top right corner of the sign-in screen. Users who have already signed in can find it in the middle of the Settings screen, which they can reach by tapping the icon on the top right corner of the main screen.
After selecting Scan and Secure, users need to tap “Continue,” follow the app’s instructions, and then begin moving from their present location to determine if an unknown device is moving with them. The scan needs to run for 10 minutes without interruption to get the best results. A device’s Bluetooth and location settings also must be enabled. If a user detects a suspicious fob or other device, Tile will work with law enforcement through a court order to identify its owner.
The company promises that this is only the first step in its efforts towards increased safety.