Slovenia has become something of a startup hotbed in the past few years and Chipolo – an easy-to-use bluetooth location device – is the beneficiary of the Slovenian startup craze.
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Designed and developed by two startups working together – Geartronik and Nollie Apps, Chipolo is a rounded sensor that connects to your smartphone via Bluetooth 4.0. You can download the app from Google Play or the iOS App Store, connect your device to any number of trackers and you’re good to go.
The team behind Chipolo promise a 60 meter signal strength, making it good for indoor and outdoor use. Once the tracker is out of range, a notification is sent to your device. If you miss the notification, the app will note the last known GPS location on a map, once you get in range of the item.
If you happen to misplace your smartphone, give Chipolo a shake and the phone will start ringing. Chipolo also comes with temperature sensors, meaning you can additionally turn it into a bluetooth thermometer.
The team behind the tracker has some ambitious goals for the future. The forthcoming ‘Chipolo Network’ will allow other Chipolos to track ‘missing’ or ‘stolen’ items, sending the coordinates right to your phone. It’s something like crowdsourcing a missing poster.
The tracker made its debut on Kickstarter, where it went on to raise more than $160,000 – ten times the original goal. 3,000 people backed the project with over a week left. Currently, the tracker only supports iOS and Android devices, but Chipolo should come to Windows Phone next year – making it the first tracker to do so.
The product will come in nine colors and is scheduled to launch in January 2014.