Google is reportedly working on its very own Bluetooth-enabled location tracking device, similar to Apple’s AirTag, to help users locate their misplaced valuables. The device, codenamed Grogu, after the Baby Yoda character from the Star Wars series “The Mandalorian,” is being developed by the Google Nest team.
It is expected to work on a distributed tracking network, similar to Apple’s AirTag and Samsung’s SmartTag. The search giant may rebrand the distributed tracking network as the ‘Finder Network’.
The AirTag is a small circular device that can be attached to valuable personal items such as keys, bags, clothing, small electronic gadgets, and vehicles, which are often prone to being misplaced. To activate the tracking feature, the user can use their Apple device and locate the item using Bluetooth in the ‘Find My’ app if it gets lost.
Google’s Grogu smart tracker operates in a similar fashion, utilizing Google’s Fast Pair feature, which is an API designed for swift pairing.
Google’s Grogu smart tracker is designed to function similarly to other tracking devices, utilizing the company’s proprietary Fast Pair technology. This API allows for the swift detection and pairing of nearby Bluetooth devices, and will be recognized as a “locator tag.” The Fast Pair feature is available on any Android device running Android 6 or later versions.
Google’s Grogu smart tracker is expected to come in an array of color options and will have an integrated speaker that allows users to locate their misplaced items through sound, similar to the AirTags. It will also have the capability of using UWB (Ultra-wideband) for precise location identification, which is present in Google’s Pixel 6 Pro, Pixel 7 Pro, and other high-end Android devices, although its use has been limited so far. Furthermore, it will also support Bluetooth LE.
At the moment, there is no official information available about the design, features, release date, and pricing of the new tracking device. However, it is speculated that Google may unveil the product in conjunction with new Pixel phones at its I/O Developer Conference in May 2023, as suggested by Wojciechowski.
With the increasing popularity of location tracking devices, Google’s entry into the market with its own device will be a significant development. The device will not only provide an added convenience for users but also help them keep track of their valuable personal belongings.
The device’s compatibility with Fast Pair and UWB will make it even more user-friendly, providing accurate location tracking and easy pairing with other devices. It remains to be seen how the device will compare to existing products in the market, but it’s likely to be a game-changer in the location-tracking industry.