Samsung SmartTag Enables You to Locate Objects with Augmented Reality
Samsung is launching the new $40 SmartTag Plus across the globe on April 16. It will be available in the US “in the coming weeks.” The SmartTag Plus is a newer version of the $30 SmartTag and costs an extra $10. The device enables users to locate lost items like keys.
The SmartTag Plus device uses both Bluetooth and ultra-wideband technology to locate items that the device is connected to. There is an improvement, though. The Galaxy SmartTag+ now uses augmented reality in the object search to visually guide users to where the lost items are. The augmented reality leverages smartphone cameras along with the SmartThings Find service to visually direct the user to the lost items.
The SmartTag Plus is similarly a small tag that can be attached to a suitcase, backpack, or keychain and can then be located using the Samsung SmartThings app if they are lost.
Both of these products are relatively new. The standard SmartTag was launched on January 29th this year. The SmartTag Plus is now set for launch on April 16th. The difference between these two tags lies in the built-in wireless technology. While the SmartTag uses Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE), the new SmartTag Plus uses both BLE and ultra-wideband (UWB).
Both of these trackers are compatible only with Galaxy smartphones. The SmartTag+ now also supports newer Galaxy devices like the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra, Galaxy S21+, Galaxy S21 Ultra, and the Galaxy Z Fold 2. This is because these are the only Samsung Galaxy devices with the ultra-wideband chip installed.
Augmented Reality Helps with the Object Search
The ultra-wideband technology can locate signals with an accuracy of up to 10cm while Bluetooth comes to just within one to three meters of the device. The increase in precision due to the UWB allows for a visual search of the object using augmented reality: users can activate their smartphone cameras and they can subsequently be guided in the direction of the SmartTag Plus tag via arrows and point clouds. On the other hand, the default SmartTag launched early in the year will only show how close the object is. When you are in the vicinity of the SmartTag, you can even activate a loud sound to help you locate the object quicker.
In case the item you are searching for is far away, you can call up a map and find the lost item with the help of other Galaxy users. If the tag is registered, you will receive a notification. But you can only see the exact location yourself.
An Ultra-Competitive Tagging and Tracking Marketplace
The SmartTag Plus arrives in the market on April 16 and will cost $40, $10 more than the earlier standard SmartTag. However, unlike the standard SmartTag, it is available in only two colors- black and gray. The augmented reality search can’t be seen, however.
There are rumors that Apple is also working on a similar tracker for iOS devices dubbed AirTags which likely also uses ultra-wideband technology. It is not known when Apple’s tracker will hit the market.
However, Apple’s and Samsung’s fiercest competitor is Tile which has been around for quite some time with a Bluetooth tracker that supports both Android and iOS devices. Tile is also working on a UWB tracker that will include augmented reality search and which is planned for this year.