The two companies had already announced plans for Tile to join Sidewalk last fall, but today’s announcement gives an actual date and details for the integration. The addition of Tile support comes just a few days after Amazon is turning on Sidewalk support for compatible Echo devices in the US on June 8th, too. Also getting access to Sidewalk are Level’s smart locks, which will be able to leverage Sidewalk to directly connect to Ring doorbells, allowing the locks to be used even when outside of Bluetooth range.
According to Amazon, Sidewalk uses a combination of “Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE), the 900 MHz spectrum, and other frequencies” to allow devices to communicate without Wi-Fi. Devices that support Sidewalk — including a variety of Echo and Ring gadgets — can serve as “Sidewalk Bridges” that work together as access points to the Sidewalk network (think of them almost like individual points on a neighborhood-wide mesh router system).
When Tile joins Sidewalk, its trackers will be able to be found using Amazon’s network in conjunction with Tile’s existing Bluetooth network, making it even easier to find your missing devices. Additionally, Tile is expanding support for Amazon’s Echo smart speakers by allowing users to see the Echo device to which the missing tag is closest. It’s not quite on the level of the hyper-localized tracking of an ultra-wideband network, though.
The news also comes as Apple launches its own AirTag trackers, a direct competitor to Tile’s. Apple’s trackers rely on a mixture of the company’s Find My network — which leverages the Bluetooth capabilities of iPhone, iPad, and Mac devices — and its ultra-wideband radio technology to help locate missing tracking tags.
Tile has recently criticized Apple’s trackers, claiming that Apple is using its control over its hardware and software stack for unfair advantages that third-party companies (like Tile) are unable to access.