Chipolo One review: Free features and flashy colors for everyone

Bluetooth trackers are having a bit of a moment, and who can blame them. We all lose things now and again, so why not make life a little bit easier? The problem is that most options come in gray, black, or white — not exactly thrilling hues for most people. Now, Chipolo is here to shake things up with its vibrant One tracker, as well as the Apple Find My-enabled One Spot. Find out how they stack up in our Chipolo One review.

See also: The best Apple AirTag alternatives

What you need to know about the Chipolo One

A picture of the tracker with its packaging

Luke Pollack / Android Authority

  • Chipolo One (One-pack): $25/€25/£22
  • Chipolo One (Four-pack): $75/€75/£66
  • Chipolo One Spot (One-pack): $28/€30/£28
  • Chipolo One Spot (Four-pack): $90/€100/£90

The Chipolo One is a small, disc-shaped Bluetooth tracker that you can attach to just about anything. It features a small hole perfect for keyrings, pet collars, and even some camera straps. Although it sports a lightweight, plastic construction, the six color options are unlike most you’ll find from competitors. You can pick up the Chipolo One in black, white, red, blue, yellow, and even green — or you can buy a multi-pack to mix and match.

Chipolo’s top competition comes from the Apple AirTag and the Samsung Galaxy SmartTag, though it’s most similar to the Tile Mate tracker. It’s not roped into either Android or iOS, so you download the app and share your account across both ecosystems. The companion app is the only accessory you’ll really need for your tracker, and it’s your hub for all things Chipolo. You’ll need it to set up alerts, manage your ringtone, and register each new Chipolo you pick up.

There are two types of Chipolo One — the One and the Apple Find My-powered One Spot.

Once you get your Chipolo One set up, you can press it twice to ring your phone. If you misplace your One, just head back into the app and press the Ring to Find button. When you find your Chipolo, a single press silences the ringtone.

There are actually two different versions of the Chipolo One to try out — the classic One, which uses Chipolo’s community for tracking, and the One Spot, which taps into Apple’s Find My network for improved tracking. The latter is only compatible with Apple devices with the Find My app, such as iPhones and iPads. Sadly, the Chipolo One Spot only comes in black. Boo.

The handy $25 Bluetooth tracker boasts a nigh-unrivaled two-year battery life, and you can replace the battery yourself. All it takes is another CR2032 cell, and you’ve got years more tracking in front of you. Overall, the Chipolo One sounds pretty impressive, so let’s put the claims to the test.

What’s good?

A picture of the chipolo one tracker held above its packaging in front of a window

Luke Pollack / Android Authority

The all-plastic design keeps Chipolo’s One feeling light as a feather. It’s not much different than a large coin, and it’s easy to forget that you’re carrying it around. Another perk of the plastic approach is the rainbow of color options. There’s nothing wrong with a simple black or white tracker, but it’s nice to show a little bit of personality now and then. You can also remove the rear battery color and swap it with another Chipolo One for even more color combinations.

Chipolo’s free features are some of the best around. You can tap into handy extras that some other third-party trackers like the Tile Mate would charge you for. The app pings you as soon as your Chipolo One falls out of range from your phone — especially handy if you’re tracking car keys. The One even doubles as a camera shutter if you want to snap the perfect shot without any camera shake. Enter the in-app camera, and you can double press to snap to your heart’s content.

The Chipolo One is top of the class when it comes to free features.

One last feature you’ll need the app to control is your ringtone. I currently have mine set to the Pixel Dance to match my Pixel 5, and it’s plenty loud. Chipolo claims that the One can reach an output of up to 120dB, and I can’t argue with it. I had no trouble hearing the chime from a few rooms away, even if I tossed the Chipolo One into my laundry hamper. For comparison, AirTags and SmartTags are both rated at around 90dB.

If you choose to pass your Chipolo One to a friend or a family member, you can also remove it from your account with just a few taps in the app — something you can’t do with a Tile tag.

What’s not so good?

A close-up picture of the chipolo one in the palm of a hand

Luke Pollack / Android Authority

There’s a lot to love about the Chipolo One, but it’s not a perfect Bluetooth tracker. Chipolo claims that the battery is replaceable — and it is — but it’s a bit harder than you might expect. You have to pry the entire back panel off, which is tough unless you have tiny fingers. It’s easier done with a small screwdriver, though you run the risk of scratching the plastic finish. At least with two years of battery life, you shouldn’t have to worry about this very often.

My other main gripe with the Chipolo One comes in the app. It’s not a bad app overall, but the ringtone options are very limited. They’re free, it’s true, but three of your seven options are Christmas-themed. You might not mind too much if it’s December and you celebrate Christmas, but it seriously limits your flexibility for the rest of the year.

If you don’t like Deck the Halls, Jingle Bells, or Merry Christmas, then your ringtones are fairly limited.

The Chipolo One comes advertised with an impressive Bluetooth range of 200 feet. However, that’s almost impossible to achieve. You can’t have any interference of any kind — no trees, rocks, or walls. As soon as you introduce a barrier into the equation, the range drops to around 40 or 50 feet.

Chipolo also complicates things when it comes to anti-stalking features. The Find My-based Chipolo One Spot will send you a notification on your iPhone if an unregistered Chipolo tracker is close to you for an extended time. This mirrors Apple’s AirTags. However, there aren’t any anti-stalking features for the regular Chipolo One to speak of. A Chipolo representative noted in a Reddit thread that the omission is “something we have to make a priority,” and hinted at a firmware update, but also noted that there is currently, “no set date” for any upgrades on this front.

You’ll want to be extra careful around water, too, as the Chipolo One only bears an IPX5 rating. It should handle splashes without issue, but you may have trouble if it gets dropped in a lake or a pool. Tile’s top tags and the AirTag offer a little more protection here.

Chipolo One review: Should I buy it?

A picture of the tracker and its companion app

Luke Pollack / Android Authority

If you want a truly flexible Bluetooth tracker, the Chipolo One should be near the top of your list. It blends excellent free features with remarkable battery life while maintaining a wallet-friendly price point. You can’t get an AirTag in blue or a Galaxy SmartTag in green, but you can grab a Chipolo one in both shades and more.

The Chipolo One is closest to the Tile Mate, but Tile only holds an edge regarding battery replacement. After all, two minutes of inconvenience every two years beats an annual battery change and extra subscription fees. Chipolo may not offer as many shapes or sizes as Tile does, but the One is small enough and thin enough for most uses. Don’t forget, Chipolo doesn’t lock you into Android or iOS like its Apple and Samsung rivals do — you can bring this tracker to any new device you grab.

If you want a truly flexible Bluetooth tracker, the Chipolo One should be near the top of your list. The Chipolo One Spot is a fantastic AirTag alternative too.

As for the Chipolo One Spot, it’s a fantastic alternative to Apple’s own AirTags. While you lose out on a few features (notably no precision finding or contact sharing when in lost mode) due to some lacking hardware, the One Spot is louder and cheaper than Apple’s tags and still has access to the Find My network.

Those of you who dread Christmas music may think twice, but there are still other ringtones to try. At just $25 (or just a few dollars more for the Spot), this is peace of mind that most users will be happy to pay for.

Chipolo tracker 3

Chipolo One

The Chipolo One stands out in a crowded segment with plenty of free features, a few loud ringtones, and more color options that the AirTag or Galaxy SmartTag can shake a stick at.

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