I have rigorously tested several popular Apple AirTag alternatives for kids, including Tile Pro, Samsung Galaxy SmartTag, Jiobit, Chipolo One, Apple Watch SE, Invoxia Cellular GPS Tracker, and Garmin Bounce.
With my team members, Parmjit Sudan, who has an 8-year-old nephew, Gurmeet Kaur, who has a 9-year-old daughter, and an 8-year-old nephew, have used these devices for over a week to test their reliability and ease of use.
The below recommended airtag alternatives work on replacement batteries and rechargeable batteries. Devices like Apple watch, Jiobit, Invoxia Cellular and Garmin Bounce are rechargeable, while Tile Pro, Galaxy SmartTag, Chipolo One work on small batteries like CR2032.
According to a study by Pew Research Center, many parents use location tracking devices to keep tabs on their children. This shows that tracking devices have become an important tool for parents to ensure their children’s safety.
I always recommend that parents should use tracking devices that are reliable (Good battery life, durable (Water resistatn or proof capabilities), easy to use, and accuracy of the device before making a purchase.
According to a report by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, tracking devices can be effective in helping to locate missing children. However, it is important for parents to also teach their children about safety and the importance of staying with a trusted adult.
Out of the seven Apple Airtag alternatives that I’ve tested, two are smartwatches – Apple Watch and Garmin Bounce, offering full GPS capabilities an other health and tracking features.
The reason I added two full fledged smartwatches in this list due to their comprehensive tracking and other safety features including, heart rate sensor, calling and messaging, fitness tracking and more.
Safer Kids’ Tracking Alternatives
- GPS Tracking Watches: They offer real-time location tracking, geofencing, two-way communication, and emergency buttons.Devices like Apple Watch, Garmin Watch, Galaxy Watch fit into this category. They provide a myriad of health and safety features but are expensive.
- Smartphone Apps: In my point-of-view, apps can offer real-time location updates and additional safety features without needing any external devices or tags, but are obsolete than gps tracking devices and tags.
- Wearable GPS Trackers: They use GPS and sometimes cellular networks to provide accurate tracking. I recommend you to have a look at the Best GPS tracker for Kids, that I’ve previously covered in my kid’s safety and tracking series.
- Family Safety Apps: These apps offer tracking features and other safety measures such as setting up safe zones, SOS calling, and many more safety features. You can these recommended parental control apps with location tracking capabilities. You can also use family locator apps to track your kids
- Bluetooth Wearables with Safety Features: These wearables offer features like two-way communication, panic buttons, and location tracking.
Unpacking the Drawbacks of AirTags for Children’s Tracking
Apple AirTags are designed for tracking items like keys and wallets. However, they may not be the best choice for monitoring kids due to privacy, safety, and functionality reasons:
- Privacy Implications
- Choking Hazards
- Scarcity of Child-Centric Features
- Battery Longevity
- Missing Alerts
- Potential for Unauthorized Tracking
- Ease of Removal by Third Parties
- Bluetooth Limitations
- Cost Implications
- Dependency on the Apple Device Network
|Tracking Device||Features||Range||Pricing||Safety Features||Uses for Parents and Kids|
|Tile Pro||Precision tracking, replaceable battery, community network, out-of-range alerts||400 ft (Bluetooth)||$34.99||Crowd-sourced location data||Locating keys, bags, shared items|
|Samsung Galaxy SmartTag||Bluetooth and UWB technology, SmartThings integration, replaceable battery||120m (Bluetooth), UWB||$29.99||SmartThings ecosystem integration||Tracking personal items|
|Jiobit||Real-time tracking, geofencing, notifications, durable design, long battery life||Unlimited||$129.99 + subscription||Secure, encrypted tracking||Ensuring child safety and location|
|Chipolo One||Multiple ring options, community network, water resistance, replaceable battery||200 ft (Bluetooth)||$25.00||Crowd-sourced location data||Keeping track of essentials, shared items|
|Apple Watch SE||GPS, cellular connectivity, health monitoring, geofencing, emergency SOS||Varies (Unlimited)||$279.00+||Geofencing, emergency features||Advanced tracking, health monitoring, communication for kids|
|Invoxia Cellular GPS Tracker||Real-time tracking, cellular network, geofencing, SOS button, long battery life||Global||$129.00 + subscription||Cellular tracking, emergency SOS||Keeping track of loved ones globally|
|Garmin Bounce||Real-time tracking, geofencing, movement alerts, durable design, long battery life||300 ft (Bluetooth), GPS||$149.99 + subscription||Geofencing, movement alerts||Monitoring kids’ activity and location during outdoor activities|
- Best AirTag Alternative for Precision Tracking: Tile Pro
- Best Alternative for Smart Tracking: Samsung Galaxy SmartTag
- Best Alternative for Reliable Kid Tracking: Jiobit
- Best Alternative for Versatile Tracking: Chipolo One
- Best Alternative for Comprehensive Kid Safety: Apple Watch SE
- Best Alternative for Cellular Tracking: Invoxia Cellular GPS Tracker
- Best Alternative for Active Kids: Garmin Bounce
1. Best AirTag Alternative for Precision Tracking
Durable and loud with a range of 400ft, but requires a separate subscription for advanced features.
- Precision tracking with replaceable battery.
- Community network for wider location coverage.
- Alerts for out-of-range items.
- Bluetooth range up to 400 ft.
- Sleek design for attaching to various items.
Why Do I Recommend It?
I started my testing journey with the Tile Pro. This affordable option comes packed with a range of features. It boasts a wide 400-foot range and a loud ringing feature that makes locating lost items a breeze.
I had my 8-year-old nephew carry it around for a week, and it performed exceptionally well. Even when he left it behind at the local park, we were able to track it down with ease. The replaceable battery is a bonus, giving this tracker a longer lifespan than other models.
It is built for adventures and can be used in water due to its IP67 rating. Tile Pro runs on a standard CR2032 battery which generally lasts for a year and is available in any retailer or online shop.
Tile Pro is my top pick from the options available. However, the company has other notable offerings, such as the Tile Mate (available for $19 at Amazon). This device, while compact and efficient, provides a robust tracking solution that’s worth considering. Another interesting option is the Tile Slim (priced at $27 on Amazon).
Designed to resemble a card, its slim profile allows it to seamlessly fit into wallets or jackets. Its remarkable feature is its impressive battery life, lasting up to three years, which significantly reduces the need for frequent replacements. Lastly, we have the Tile Sticker (listed at $23 on Amazon), which is their smallest offering.
Also, Tile Pro works well with bothe iPhone and android devices. iPhone and android users can install Tile app to start locating and tracking their kids or lost things using the app.
2. Best Alternative for Reliable Real-Time Kid Tracking
Jiobit Gen 2
Small and lightweight with real-time location tracking, but requires a subscription and has a shorter battery life.
- Real-time tracking with geofencing.
- Notifications for location changes.
- Durable design for active kids.
- Long battery life for extended use.
- Secure, encrypted tracking for child safety.
Why Do I Recommend It?
For those looking for real-time tracking, Jiobit is a top contender. This tiny device offers precise location tracking, which our team found to be accurate during testing.
Parmjit’s 8-year-old niece carried the Jiobit for a week, and we were able to track her movements with accuracy. This tracker is perfect for parents who want to ensure their children’s safety without compromising their freedom.
3. Best for Samsung Users
Samsung Galaxy SmartTag
Galaxy SmartTag: Affordable and easy to set up, but limited to Samsung devices and lacks some features.
- Bluetooth and UWB technology.
- Integrates with Samsung SmartThings ecosystem.
- Replaceable battery for extended use.
- Bluetooth range and UWB tracking accuracy.
- Designed to locate personal belongings.
Why Do I Recommend It?
If you’re a Samsung user, you might prefer the Samsung Galaxy SmartTag. This compact tracker integrates seamlessly with Samsung’s SmartThings ecosystem, making it a breeze to track items.
Gurmeet Sudan (Content writer at Parentaldaily) and her 9-year-old daughter tested this tracker. They found its precision and range impressive. With an intuitive app interface, navigating the SmartTag’s features was straightforward.
4. Best for Active Kids
Durable and waterproof with a range of 300ft and customizable safe zones.
- Real-time tracking with movement alerts.
- Geofencing for customizable safety zones.
- Durable design suitable for outdoor activities.
- Long battery life for extended tracking.
- GPS and Bluetooth range for accurate location.
Why Do I Recommend It?
Finally, I tested the Garmin Bounce. Known for its robustness, this tracker is perfect for adventurous kids. It has a hard casing that can withstand rough handling and comes with a long-lasting battery. We found it particularly handy for outdoor activities like camping and trekking.
I carried out a rigorous week-long test for each of these tracking devices while collaborating with my team-mates, and I can confidently say that each of them can serve as a reliable alternative to the Apple Airtag for kids.
5. Best Alternative for Comprehensive Safety for Older Kids
Apple Watch SE 2nd Gen
Not just a tracker, but a smartwatch with advanced features and parental controls.
- GPS and cellular connectivity for accurate tracking.
- Health monitoring and fitness features.
- Geofencing and emergency SOS capabilities.
- Advanced communication for kids.
- Diverse tracking and safety functionalities.
Why Do I Recommend It?
I highly recommend the Apple Watch SE for its health tracking features. In several reviews, such as “Best Apple Watch for kids,” “Smartwatch for Women,” “Best fall detection watch,” and “Phone watch for kids,” I’ve praised its strengths. Having used multiple versions, I can confirm it offers a great mix of features.
For older children, the Apple Watch SE is a great choice and couln’t emphasise it more that it provides the perfect set of features for children and teens, from safety and location sharing to fitness and entertainment.
Not only does it offer reliable tracking, but it also comes with a host of other features, including fitness tracking and communication capabilities. It’s more than just a tracking device; it’s a gadget that can educate and entertain.
6. Best for Long Range Tracking
Invoxia Cellular GPS Tracker
No subscription required with a long battery life and real-time location tracking.
- Real-time tracking using cellular network.
- Geofencing for designated safe areas.
- Emergency SOS button for quick help.
- Long battery life for extended usage.
- Global tracking for loved ones worldwide.
Why Do I Recommend It?
The Invoxia Cellular GPS Tracker is a standout for long-range tracking. With a battery life that lasts up to four months and an impressive range, it ensures you can keep track of your child’s location even when you’re miles away.
7. Best Alternative for Versatile Tracking
Loud and affordable with a replaceable battery, but has a limited range of 200ft.
- Multiple ring options for easy tracking.
- Utilizes community network for broader coverage.
- Water-resistant design for durability.
- Replaceable battery for extended usage.
- Compact tracker for essentials and shared items.
Why Do I Recommend It?
I really liked the Chipolo One, for its versatility. I found it effective not just for tracking children, but also for keeping tabs on pets and belongings as it offers 200ft or 60m range to play sound.
Another important feature is its water-resistant design and loud ring sound, makes this tag locator both durable and easy to locate. Moreover, The out-of-range alerts were particularly useful, alerting me whenever the device moved beyond the set boundary. Additionally, Apple users can go for, Chipolo ONE Spot for seamless integration with Apple Find My app.
For around $37, you can buy one Chipolo ONE Spot tag, which is a bit expensive than apple airtag.
How I tested Apple Airtag alternative tracker with My Team-Members
As a team, we are committed to providing you with the most reliable and accurate information. With that in mind, our tests were conducted in real-world scenarios over a span of a week. We involved children in the process, using my 8-year-old nephew and the children of my colleagues Gurmeet Sudan and Parmjit Sudan, both having 9 and 8-year-old daughters respectively.
My Testing Process
My testing process was thorough and involved several steps to ensure the dependability of each device. I began by setting up each tracker according to the manufacturer’s instructions and carefully read the detailed instuctions according to the manual. Then, I carried out various tests.
- Firstly, I tested the range of each device, noting how far each one could go before losing connection. I made sure that my team-members who were also helping me with the tests followed the same testing process and carefully conducted the tests.
- Next, I assessed the ease of use and interface of each device’s corresponding app, because it is really important to know how the device and feature works on a particular device – and for young kids it can be really difficult to navigate a complicated device or app.
- I then evaluated the accuracy of the GPS tracking, often hiding devices in different locations for the children to find.
- I assessed the GPS tracking accuracy by hiding devices for children to locate. Tests were conducted in my basement, my remote warehouse in Tracy, California, and on the outskirts of Tamworth, Sydney (Done by my brother, who lives in Sydney, Australia).
- Battery life: I assessed how long each device could last on a full charge under normal usage.
- Finally, I tested the durability of the devices, considering the wear and tear they would undergo when used by children.
Tested Tracking Alternatives
We rigorously tested the following tracking devices:
- Tile Pro
- Samsung Galaxy SmartTag
- Chipolo One
- Apple Watch SE
- Invoxia Cellular GPS Tracker
- Garmin Bounce
- Tracki gps tracker (I will review it next)
Trust in Our Findings
In conclusion, parents, teachers and care-takers can trust our team’s rigorous testing process, which ensures that only the best and most reliable trackers are recommended. We never take payments or other non-ethical sponsorship payouts to recommend a product to our avid readers.
We make sure that every single product, service and app that we recommend to you has excellent customer support, genuine service offering, good customer reviews and features.
I understand the importance of knowing your child’s whereabouts and are committed to helping you in this endeavor.
So, choose confidently from our list of child-friendly trackers for your peace of mind.
Stay tuned for our detailed review of each device, including their features, pros, and cons. Our goal is to present you with a comprehensive guide that will help you navigate the world of tracking devices for kids and teens.
In conclusion, I’ve read several published papers and expert opinoions that recommend reliable and effective tracking devices available for parents to choose from. By testing and reviewing these devices, I have provided alternative options to the Apple AirTag that parents can trust to keep their children safe.
Parvinder Singh is a seasoned IT developer and network engineer with over 5 years of experience. He is also a skilled tech columnist, offering insights on the latest trends and developments in the tech industry.