China-based smart home solutions company, Felion Technologies, has launched a credit card-sized asset tracker designed to help users quickly and easily locate their missing valuables. The ‘VOCOLINC Slim TAG’ weighs only 12 g and is provided in an 85.5 by 54 by 1.6 mm form factor, enabling it to be easily carried in a wallet or purse. The asset tracker works with the Apple Find My™ network. By placing the Find My-enabled VOCOLINC Slim TAG in their personal adding it to the ‘Find My’ app on their iPhone or iPad, users can locate their missing or misplaced items.
The integrated Nordic Semiconductor nRF52832 SoC supports Bluetooth® 5.3 wireless connectivity, its high link budget 2.4 GHz radio offers a maximum receive (RX) sensitivity of -96 dBm and a maximum transmit (TX) output of +4 dBm, for a total link budget of >100 dBm. This provides an effective connectivity range of 60 meters for immediately locating lost items. If outside of effective Bluetooth LE range, devices that support the Find My network send out a secure Bluetooth LE signal so nearby Apple devices in the network can detect it and report its approximate location to the owner.
The Apple Find My network—made up of hundreds of millions of Apple devices—provides an easy, secure way to locate compatible personal items using the Find My app on iPhone, iPad, Mac, or using the Find Items app on Apple Watch. Find My requires iOS 14.5, iPad OS 14.5, Mac OS Big Sur 11.1, and watchOS 8.0 or later software. The Find My network accessory program enables third-party companies to build finding capabilities into their products, letting users access Apple’s Find My app to locate and keep track of important items, like the VOCOLINC Slim TAG, even when they’re not nearby. The Find My network is anonymous and uses advanced encryption, meaning no one else—not even Apple, Felion Technologies, or Nordic—can view the location of your items.
“VOCOLINC Slim TAG is small, waterproof, and has a battery that can last for up to three years,” says Jianfeng Liang, CEO of Felion Technologies. “Alongside the Apple Find My network and Nordic’s Bluetooth LE wireless connectivity, you have an asset tracker that can reliably and securely help users retrieve their valuable possessions if they are misplaced.”
The tag is powered by a Li-Mn02 cell, achieving its extended battery life thanks in part to the ultra low power characteristics of the Nordic SoC. The nRF52832 has been engineered to minimize power consumption with features such as the 2.4GHz radio’s 5.5mA peak RX/TX currents and a fully-automatic power management system.
“We selected the nRF52832 SoC not only for its ultra low power consumption, but also for its reliability and stability,” continues Liang. “The technical information and reference designs provided, as well as the quick response from Nordic’s excellent application engineers, ensured the development process was quick and painless.”