I’ve used Bluetooth keyfobs before, but none have worked as smoothly and as efficiently as the elgato smart key. Pairing with your phone, the key fob triggers an alert when you’re out of range – perfect if you’re prone to leaving the house and locking yourself out. You can also attach to a camera, bag or leave in you car and use the last known co-ordinates to triangulate where you are. You can even pop it on some luggage and be pinged when it’s coming out of the carousel.
The smart key uses Bluetooth Smart rather than bog-standard Bluetooth and this is where it really shines. The speed at which it recognised that my keys and I were parting company was impressive and makes it a lot more useful as an anti-theft device than some competing units. Although you have to leave your Bluetooth connection on all day, the battery drain on my iPhone didn’t feel as pronounced as other devices I’ve used. The fob is powered by a replaceable CR202 battery, which elgato claims will last you a good six months.
The supplied free app is clear and simple and quickly enables you to configure the sounds and flashes you want the device to make. You also get a really clear idea of where your fob is and can even set safe zones so you’re free to wander around your office or house without constantly triggering beeps.
The fob is fairly basic in appearance but feels robust and is IP65 certified for dust and water protection so can deal with the rigamarole of daily key life.
At £40 it’s not quite an essential purchase, but it’s very a very impressive implementation of the technology. If you lose your keys on a frequent basis, or can see yourself using the varied alternative uses – travel or personal security, it’s definitely the best at doing what it does that I know of. elgato smart key out now for £30