It seems that 2021 is the year of the tracker, with new options from Samsung, Apple, and now T-Mobile in the form of its SyncUp Tracker. But unlike those other Tile-type tracking devices, SyncUp uses LTE rather than Bluetooth or Ultra Wideband for real-time location information, a la Samsung’s SmartThings tracker. That means it doesn’t rely on being within a certain range of your phone (or other phones) to tell you where it is — but it does come with a $5 per month data charge on your T-Mobile phone plan.
The SyncUp offers some nice tracking features: you can make the device ring to help locate it when it’s out of sight, for example, and it offers geofencing to send you an alert when it leaves a predetermined area. It’s also IP67 dust and water resistant. More unusually, it offers a light sensor as an optional feature to detect if it’s been moved from somewhere dark, like the inside of a suitcase, to somewhere brighter.
Some trackers fit into the “set it and forget it” category with long-lasting batteries that only need to be replaced once a year or so. The SyncUp is not one of these devices. Its 900mAh battery needs to be recharged about once every seven days, so it’ll either be something you use occasionally as needed, or one more gadget in your life that you have to remember to charge.
Since the SyncUp operates on T-Mobile’s data network, you’ll need one of their data plans to use it: specifically, a postpaid Magenta plan, though the company says it plans to make the tracker available for Sprint and prepaid customers in the future. With autopay, T-Mobile says prices start at $5 per month per connected device, and it’s compatible with both Android and iOS phones. It goes on sale next Friday, May 7th, for $60 outright or $2.50 per month with financing.