Chipolo Card Spot review: The best way to track your wallet with Apple’s Find My
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The Chipolo Card Spot integrates seamlessly with Apple’s Find My app and is the absolute best way to track your wallet.
After being announced earlier this year at CES 2022, the Chipolo Card Spot is starting to ship to customers. For now, it remains the only wallet-style Bluetooth tracker to natively integrate with Apple’s Find My app, like Apple AirTag.
Apple recently started allowing integration of third-party accessories into the Find My app, and we’ve seen bikes, headphones, and other accessories slowly hit the market.
Chipolo was among the first partners, launching the Chipolo One Spot as a Bluetooth tracker with a key fob hole fully integrated with Find My. Now the company is back with its second Find My compatible product.
The Chipolo Card Spot is very thin, measuring just 2.4mm thick and the same footprint as a standard credit card. It’s water-resistant enough to withstand some splashes, but we don’t recommend submerging it.
There is a small button in the lower left corner of the map. This is used to activate the card before configuration.
To help you locate your card and the wallet around it, Chipolo Card Spot has a small speaker.
This speaker sits in the corner of the board itself. Chipolo says they’ve paid a lot of attention to the placement of this speaker, positioning it so that when you place the card in your wallet, it naturally faces outward.
They asked people to hold up the card and place it in their wallet, noting which corner was most likely to face. The bottom right corner made the most sense since most people are right-handed.
Your wallet’s new friend
You can use the Chipolo Card Spot anywhere, but the size indicates its intent. Its main use is to locate your wallet.
Although it’s very thin, just over two credit cards, that doesn’t mean it’ll fit in every wallet. We first wanted to see if it would work in Apple’s MagSafe wallet.
Unfortunately, it’s still a bit too thick. Chipolo Card Spot will fit in Apple’s MagSafe wallet, but a second card is nearly impossible. If you can’t fit a card or two next to the Chipolo Card Spot, its presence is irrelevant.
The good news is that it will fit into almost any other wallet. We’ve tried thin wallets like the Ridge Wallet and our Nomad Leather Wallet. It fits perfectly with enough space for all our other cards or cash.
It does not create unseemly bumps or bumps or prevent other cards from slipping. In the wallet, we never had any problems hearing the sound either. We placed the wallet in our sofa, in a coat pocket and in a pile of laundry – the most common places we unintentionally leave our wallet – and each time it was easy to get close to the Find My app before. to find it, thanks to the persistent tweet.
No third-party app required
Unlike most Bluetooth trackers, the Chipolo Card Spot works exclusively with the Find My app. No Chipolo app is needed or even supported. Its configuration is similar to that of other Find My products.
To start, you press the button on the Chipolo Card Spot to wake it up and activate it.
Once it’s active, you can tap the + button in the Find My app. A modal will appear at the bottom of your screen as it searches for the new device. Once found, you can press add.
With iOS 15.4, Apple is adding new warnings to Find My Devices, including the Chipolo Card Spot. In an attempt to reduce the ongoing problem of stalking, Apple advises users that these should not be used to track individuals.
Apple adds that if you track someone with the Chipolo card, it’s designed to alert them. Beyond that, authorities will be able to identify you as the original owner of that device.
To emphasize this point, Apple shows you your profile picture, verified email address, and phone number.
Find My features are then summarized when your map is successfully added. With the map in the Find My app, you’ll be able to see its current battery life, where it was last located, and play a sound. Map settings are here too.
From the Find My app, you can adjust notifications. Notifications are left behind alerts that tell you that you’ve left your current location without your map in tow. It’s useful, but since it requires you to change location, you need to move a decent distance away before the alert goes off.
We attempted to leave our wallet and card on the tablet in a restaurant to test the notifications. We walked to our car, waiting for a notification to appear. He arrived just before we pulled out of the parking lot, letting us know that our wallet was no longer with us.
This makes it useful if you leave the wallet behind, but it’s not as useful if someone takes your pocket. The thief would probably be out of sight before you get the alert that your wallet has been stolen.
Some locations can also be whitelisted in the Find My app. We have whitelisted our house so that if we go down we don’t get constant alerts that we forgot our wallet.
If you lose your wallet, you can put it in lost mode. In Lost Mode, you’ll be able to take advantage of the largest Find My community of iPhones, iPads, and Macs. If another user is within range of your wallet, you will be notified of their new location.
When someone finds your wallet, assuming they want to do the right thing, they will be able to use the Find My app itself to identify your wallet. The app will then present your contact information so they can get in touch.
Chipolo vs. AirTag
There are distinct differences between Apple’s AirTag and the Chipolo Card Spot, with the shape most apparent.
AirTag is particularly bulbous, making it ill-suited to slip into a wallet. One option to help AirTag is to use something like Nomad’s Card for AirTag.
This card helps smooth out the AirTag bump and slips into wallets more easily. But it still can’t make the tracker finer. That’s what we’ll be giving up for the Chipolo Card Spot.
Another difference is ultra-wideband support. Apple’s AirTag uses the U1 chip in your iPhone to help with precision tracking. It helps to find your object by giving you the exact distance and direction of the object. However, Apple does not allow third-party Find My devices to use U1 or Precision Finding.
Moreover, its absence is irrelevant in our experience. AirTag has a small speaker. We found that Chipolo’s speaker is much louder, making it easier to find.
It takes longer to open Precision Finding, wait for the iPhone to locate itself in 3D space and its relationship to your AirTag. It was faster and more reliable to open and use the Find My app to get close, then find it with audio.
The lack of U1 support has in no way diminished the Chipolo Card Spot experience. It is still a much better wallet solution than AirTag for our wallet.
Should you buy the Chipolo Card Spot?
The Chipolo Card Spot is a niche device – by design. Apple developed AirTag to be as broad as possible, while opening up the Find My app to third parties to meet the need for specific uses. A portfolio tracker is one of those special use cases.
With only one other map-type tracker announced to support the Find My app (which has yet to ship), Chipolo remains the only viable solution.
Apple’s Find My app is a great solution for tracking your items and uses millions of devices to surface lost items. Wallets are one of the most commonly lost devices, and Chipolo has the best solution for tracking them.
- Ultra-thin design
- Long two-year battery life with recycling and 50% discount on replacement
- Loud noise for easy location
- Direct and exclusive support for the Find My app
- Leveral Find My community to locate the missing device
- Alerts left behind prevent you from losing it in the first place
- First Apple-certified card-type tracker
- No ultra-wideband support
- Must be replaced when battery dies
- Doesn’t fit in Apple’s MagSafe wallet
Rating 4.5 out of 5
The Chipolo Card Spot is available for pre-order directly from Chipolo, with the single pack costing $35 and a double pack selling for $60.
Those looking for an alternative available for shipping at press time can find Apple’s AirTag on Amazon for $29 (compare AirTag prices). The Chipolo One Spot, which works with the Apple Find My app and retails for $28, is also in stock.
Tile’s Slim 2022 model works with iOS and is also currently on sale on Amazon.