Milwaukee is soon coming out with the Tick, a small Bluetooth tool and equipment tracker. The Tick is a small tag that can be easily attached to your tools, allowing you to track any brand of tool through their One-Key app.
The Tick is engineered to withstand jobsite conditions, both indoors and outside. It has an operating temperature range of -20°F to 140°F, and is rated to IP67 standards, making it water-tight and dust-tight.
The case is made from UV-rated plastic, to help prevent embrittlement from extended exposure to sunlight.
It was designed to endure high vibrations and impacts, with the instructions mentioning an IK08 impact protection rating.
The low profile shell is designed to be unobtrusive or easily hidden. You can attach the Tick to your equipment in several ways, including #8 pan head screws, 5/32″ diameter rivets, cable ties, glue, adhesive tape, or a keyring.
Dimensions: 2.13″ long x 1.88″ wide x 0.49″ tall.
It looks like you can twist off the front cover to access the battery compartment. The mounting holes are recessed into the back, so you can change batteries without removing the Tick. Or, if you don’t want somebody tampering with the device, it looks like you could use a larger screw head to hinder cover removal.
The Tick is powered by a single CR2032 lithium coin battery, which Milwaukee says should provide 1 year of runtime.
The device has a signal range of up to 100ft. You can receive low battery reminders and missing tool notifications through the One-Key app. Here’s how the tracking works according to Milwaukee:
Tool records and locations are updated when any device with the ONE-KEY™ app comes within 100 feet of the TICK™. These location updates are transmitted through any ONE-KEY™ app that’s in-range, regardless of whether the app is open or not, allowing users to pinpoint missing tools more quickly.
The Tick will be available starting in February 2017. A single Tick tool tracker will list for $29, and there will be quantity discounts:
- 1-Pack (48-21-2000) for $29
- 4-Pack (48-21-2004) for $99
- 10-Pack (48-21-2010) for $219
- 50-Pack (48-10-2050) for $999
So if you buy a 50 pack, the cost comes down to $20 per Tick.
More Info (via Milwaukee)
Milwaukee was really hammering on the security functions of One-Key at NPS16. It’s no surprise that they are expanding the One-Key system to dedicated tool trackers.
At NPS16 they retold the story several times of a contractor that had his van stolen. He had a One-Key tool inside the van and they were able to track the tool and recover the van and $20,000 of tools. Now you can add the same tracking functionality to all of your tools and equipment for $30 each.
With a low cost to entry you can effectively have an inventory control system. By picking up your phone you can figure out if a tool has been returned to the shop, if it’s still with an employee, or left on the jobsite.
I think this is a really cool product, but I’m a little worried about battery life though. Going around and changing the batteries in all your tags every year seems like a hassle. Then again, the app can tell you if the batteries are running low before you need to change them.
Stuart’s Note: While the cost per unit is higher than that of the Bosch TrackTag, a Bluetooth tracking device that was announced and released overseas but not here, there is no subscription fee to use One-Key. If or when the Bosch TrackTag comes to the USA, a comparison would definitely be interesting.