Google is reportedly working on a location tracker that will be similar to Apple’s AirTags, Samsung’s SmartTag, and Tile. According to developer Kuba Wojciechowski, the Google Nest team is developing a tracker codenamed “Grogu”. The device will reportedly include an onboard speaker and support for Bluetooth Low Energy and ultra-wideband technology.
Wojciechowski discovered evidence of the tracker when he noticed that Google added support for locator tags in the developer hub for Fast Pair, an Android feature that allows users to quickly connect Bluetooth devices. However, there are not many details available about the device at this point. It is expected to work like other location trackers, where users can attach it to an object and track its location using their phone.
It is unclear if Google Grogu can replicate Apple’s AirTag experience, as the company has not yet released any information about the device. However, Wojciechowski states that the Pixel 6 Pro and Pixel 7 Pro both shipped with UWB modules, which would allow them to direct users to nearby objects accurately. He also notes that Google’s “finder” network will not require UWB, as BLE should be enough.
Google may face a challenge in making sure that every Android phone ships with UWB, but the company is reportedly working with chipset makers to help them support Fast Pair. This means that we could see third-party trackers rounding out the location network, something that is hard to imagine Apple ever allowing.
As for availability, there is no specific timing for when the device will be released, but it could be announced at the Google I/O conference this year. Google is already behind the competition in the location tracking market, and the release of a similar device could help the company catch up.