Losing your smartphone not only hits your wallet, it also puts your privacy and personal information at risk. To mitigate this, there are apps you can use to locate your lost or stolen phone or other valuables.
You can also use physical tracking devices, such as duet by Protag, to keep tabs on your phone and alert you before you actually lose it.
The duet device pairs wirelessly with your phone using Bluetooth 4.0 Low Power technology. If the pair are separated by a distance greater than 10m, both devices start to buzz.
Protag's duet began as a project on the crowdfunding site, Indiegogo, and successfully raised US$106,830 ($133,370) earlier this month.
Made of plastic, the device feels cheap and flimsy. It is slightly larger than a $1 coin and is very light.
Prise it open and insert the coin-sized battery (included) to power it up.
Each duet comes with two 3V lithium batteries and each battery should last about six months.
Download the Protag app (iOS or Android) on your smartphone to set up Bluetooth pairing between the duet and the phone.
The app looks polished, which is unsurprising, as its creator, home-grown start-up Innova Technology, has released two tracking devices.
Because the duet is so small, it can get lost easily. Thankfully, it comes with a key ring, so you can attach it to a variety of objects, including a camera, a backpack or a handbag.
It can also be used to track other valuables, as the Protag app can keep tabs on as many as 10 duets at a time.
You can manually trigger the audio alert and use the app to locate the duets and your valuables. The app also shows the approximate locations of the duets on a map.
A radar-tracking feature indicates with Wi-Fi-like signal bars when you are within 30m of a duet. However, it does not provide a direction, so it feels like you are playing a game of hot and cold.
The original Indiegogo campaign has been extended, so you can get a duet by contributing US$29.
You also get a discount of 15 per cent if you order more. Buying 10 at once will cost US$246. Do not expect delivery before the end of October.
In Singapore, the duet is being rolled out to retailers.
Your best bet would be to get it from the electronics stores at Changi Airport, where the recommended retail price is $49.90.
Those who are wont to misplace their valuables should consider getting this Bluetooth tracker. For this price, however, the build quality could be better.
Connectivity: Bluetooth 4.0 LE (Low Energy)
Dimensions: 2.8cm x 2.8cm
Support: Android and iOS mobile devices
Value for money: 2/5
This article was first published on June 25, 2014.
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