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Tile Slim (2022) review: Same great design, less range

Wallet-friendly version of Tile's key finder feels like a step back

Tile Slim 2022 review
(Image: © Tom's Guide)

Our Verdict

The Tile Slim (2022) is still the best option for adding a slender tracker to your wallet. But the range isn't as good as promised, and that's hard to swallow given the price increase over the Slim's predecessor.

For

  • A perfect fit for wallets
  • Slick design
  • Two-way find feature
  • Three years of battery life

Against

  • $5 more expensive than its predecessor
  • Promised improvements to range didn't show up in our testing
  • Battery isn't replaceable

Tom's Guide Verdict

The Tile Slim (2022) is still the best option for adding a slender tracker to your wallet. But the range isn't as good as promised, and that's hard to swallow given the price increase over the Slim's predecessor.

Pros

  • + A perfect fit for wallets
  • + Slick design
  • + Two-way find feature
  • + Three years of battery life

Cons

  • - $5 more expensive than its predecessor
  • - Promised improvements to range didn't show up in our testing
  • - Battery isn't replaceable
Tile Slim 2022 specs

Size: 3.4 x 2.1 x 0.1 inches
Listed range: Up to 250 feet
Tested range: 80 feet
Water resistance? IP67
Battery: Non-replaceable/3 years
Colors: Black

The Tile Slim (2022) hasn't changed much from the revamped tracker designed specifically for wallets and purses that wowed us two years ago. Normally, that would be good news — we were big fans of the previous Tile Slim, and this version is still the go-to tracker for keeping tabs on your wallet since it's a perfect fit.

However, one of the promised changes — longer range — didn't materialize in our Tile Slim testing. This particular Tile tracker is still worth it, particularly if you're looking for a thin device that's well-suited to slip into tight places. But we're not as enthused with this edition as we were with its predecessor, especially after a modest price hike.

Tile Slim review: Price and availability

The Tile Slim (2022) costs $35, a $5 hike from what you had to pay for its predecessor. That may seem like a small jump in the greater scheme of things, but it does mean the Slim now costs as much as the Tile Pro, one of the best key finders with longer range and a louder alarm. 

You'd also pay as much for Apple's AirTag, which offers Ultra Wideband connectivity for precise tracking — something you won't yet find on any Tile. Of course, the round AirTag isn't really suited for slipping into a wallet the way the Tile Slim can.

Tile Slim review: Design and features

The Tile Slim remains all about the design. At 3.4 x 2.1 x 0.1 inches, it's roughly the size of a credit card, and it can slip easily into a wallet, billfold or purse. Like the other key finders in Tile's 2022 lineup, the Tile Slim offers IP67 water resistance.

Tile Slim 2022 poking out of a wallet

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

Because the Slim is so thin, there's no way to include a replaceable battery. Instead, the power source inside the tracker should keep it running for three years; after that, you'll have to get a new one. That raises concerns among some people about e-waste, though Tile does provide resources on finding places where you can recycle your dead Slim.

What modest design changes Tile has made to the Slim involve unifying the look of its trackers. Available in black only, the Slim has the same sleek appearance as the Tile Pro or Tile Mate. The Tile logo is in the lower left corner of the tracker, and you can press it twice to sound an alarm on your phone — that can be helpful if you're prone to misplacing your device.

Apart from that two-way find feature, the purpose of the Tile Slim remains unchanged. You pair the tracker to your phone over Bluetooth, and use a companion app to monitor the whereabouts of your wallet (or whatever it is you slip the Slim into). Press a button in the app, and if the Slim is in range, it will sound an alarm — not as loud as the Pro's but loud enough to hear at a distance. 

Tile Slim 2022 held in hand

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

A new feature this year includes a subtle QR code on the back of the Tile Slim that allows anyone who finds your lost wallet to scan the code and send you a message as to its whereabouts. Tile plans to add a Scan and Secure feature next year that alerts you when unrecognized trackers are trying to monitor you; I imagine this will be particularly useful given how unobtrusive the Slim can be when it's slipped inside a purse or pocket.

Tile Slim review: Performance

Tile says the Slim can now maintain a connection of up to 250 feet with your phone, the same range as the Tile Mate (2022). I didn't find that to be the case in my testing. While the Mate certainly delivered on its promised range, the Slim tended to drop its connection at around 80 feet when I tested the tracker in a public park. At my local ferry depot, where there's even more interference, the Slim would disconnect at around 50 feet.

Needless to say, that's a disappointment, not only because it doesn't come close to the listed range for the Tile Slim (2022), but because it's well short of the distances I got from the last version of this wallet tracker. I'd chalk up the subpar performance to unfavorable conditions, but Tile's other trackers all delivered ranges more in line with what was promised.

Tile Slim 2022 app

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

At least you'll be able to hear the Tile Slim's alarm, which was audible both in my park testing — how could it not be at 80 feet away? — and when I left the tracker tucked inside a coat pocket inside a closed closet and listened from a room away.

You can use your Tile Slim without having to pay for Tile's $2.99/month premium service, which adds additional features like an alarm if you leave your house without your wallet and the ability to share your Tile with an unlimited number of users. I don't find the extras that Tile Premium adds to be very essential, though Tile tells me a lot of customers do take advantage of the subscription. Different strokes for different folks, I suppose.

Tile Slim review: Verdict

If you're looking for a key finder that's better suited to keeping tabs on wallets, it's hard to top the Tile Slim for its design. It's equally hard not to be disappointed that this new version didn't come closer to the promised range improvements and feels more like a step back from its predecessor. 

You should still consider the Tile Slim for tracking the whereabouts of your wallet or purse, given its design and decent feature set. But it's not as slam-dunk a decision as it used to be.

Philip Michaels
Philip Michaels is a senior editor at Tom's Guide. He has strong opinions about Apple, the Oakland Athletics and old movies. Follow him at @PhilipMichaels.