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Spotlight on Tile: The little gadget that could help businesses secure valuable corporate-provisioned devices

California-based startup Tile (opens in new tab) has smashed its $20,000 (£13,100) funding goal and is now poised to produce an eponymous product that aims to help people quickly and easily recover their prized possessions when lost.

Utilising open-source crowdfunding platform Selfstarter, Tile has raised just shy of $1.5 million (£986,000) at time of writing, with the campaign running until 23 July.

Set to ship in "Winter 2013/14," Tiles are small, matchbook-sized Bluetooth Low Energy devices that can attach, stick on to, or sit in your property, be it a rucksack, handbag, laptop or even a bike.

The Tile then transmits the Bluetooth signal to your iOS device - the iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, (opens in new tab) iPad Mini, (opens in new tab) third and fourth-generation iPad and fifth-generation iPod Touch will be supported - and presents locational information via an app, offering a range of up to 150 feet.

In addition, you can 'Ring' your Tile and it will emit a sound, assisting the recovery process. Tiles do not require batteries or charging and will have a lifespan of one year post-activation.

All of which sounds great, but what potentially makes Tile very special indeed is its community element. If the Tiled object is outside of your device's range, it can still be tracked by other people's Tile app - the relevant information only being relayed back to you, of course. Given the level of interest that has been shown in the firm's Selfstarter drive, its ultimate goal of creating a universal lost-and-found could well be within reach.

"Tile is changing the world by making lost and misplaced belongings a thing of the past. We are giving people back hours of their lives that were previously wasted searching for missing possessions," commented Tile co-founder and CEO Nick Evans. "We will revolutionise the way we find lost items, by bringing the entire Tile community together to make the system more robust for everyone."

Pre-order in the next few days and you can get yourself a Tile for just $19 (£12.50). Once in active production, Tiles will sell for $25 (£16.45) and shipping has been confirmed for EU countries.

With an outlay of around £15, we think Tiles may prove an attractive proposition for businesses looking for a cost-effective insurance policy for valuable corporate-provisioned devices.

Android compatibility, you ask? Not right now, according to Tile.

"Until there exists an Android platform that meets our quality standards, we will not be releasing a Tile app for Android," it says on its website.

James is a freelance editor, journalist, and writer with 10+ years experience in digital media, SEO and news writing. He has produced content on a number of Future sites, including TechRadar, ITProPortal, Tom's Guide, and T3, and was Senior Staff Writer at ITProPortal.