Just hours after Apple officially announced its AirTag lost item finder, major competitor Tile has entered the chat and gone on record to publicly call the company out.
Tile has been pretty vocal about its disdain for Apple ever since the phone and computer giant announced it would encroach on its turf, becoming the biggest competitor Tile has encountered to date.
Although other devices exist, including one released by Samsung earlier this year, Tile has long dominated the market with its Bluetooth-powered dongles that can easily attach to your keys, wallet, luggage or other belongings.
However, Apple’s AirTag looks like it could nab a decent share of the market.
In a statement to Insider released following Apple’s Spring Event, Tile CEO CJ Prober publicly called Apple out.
“Our mission is to solve the everyday pain point of finding lost and misplaced things and we are flattered to see Apple, one of the most valuable companies in the world, enter and validate the category Tile pioneered,” he said.
“The reason so many people turn to Tile to locate their lost or misplaced items is because of the differentiated value we offer our consumers. In addition to providing an industry-leading set of features via our app that works with iOS and Android devices, our service is seamlessly integrated with all major voice assistants, including Alexa and Google. And with form factors for every use case and many different styles at affordable prices, there is a Tile for everyone.
“Tile has also successfully partnered with top brands like HP, Intel, Skullcandy and FitBit to enable our finding technology in mass-market consumer categories like laptops, earbuds and wearables. With over 30 partners, we look forward to extending the benefits of Tile to millions of customers and enabling an experience that helps you keep track of all your important belongings.
“We welcome competition, as long as it is fair competition. Unfortunately, given Apple’s well-documented history of using its platform advantage to unfairly limit competition for its products, we’re sceptical. And given our prior history with Apple, we think it is entirely appropriate for Congress to take a closer look at Apple’s business practices specific to its entry into this category. We welcome the opportunity to discuss these issues further in front of Congress tomorrow.”
Tile is set to testify in front of Congress tomorrow about Apple’s alleged anti-competitive behaviour alongside other brands like Spotify and Match, who also have issues with Apple’s in-app commissions.
However, Apple has argued that its Find My network pre-dates Tile altogether and that its recent decision to allow third-party devices (including major Tile competitor Chipolo) to use Find My negates any sort of anti-competitive claims.
Additionally Apple notes that Tile already dominates with a 90% share of the market, so they don’t have much to worry about when it comes to competition.
“We have worked from the very beginning of iPhone to help protect the privacy of users’ location data, giving them transparency and control over how all apps may access and share their location. Apple created Find My over a decade ago to help users locate and manage lost devices in a private and secure way. Since then, we have expanded Find My to help users keep tabs on the other important things in their life — from sharing location with friends and family members, to locating third-party products like Van Moof bikes and Chipolo item finders. We have always embraced competition as the best way to drive great experiences for our customers, and we have worked hard to build a platform in iOS that enables third-party developers to thrive,” Apple’s statement reads.
Unsurprisingly, the AirTags retails at a significantly higher price point ($45 each) than any of Tile’s various products, which range from $24.99 to $36.99 each.