Knog Scout Test: The spy who bike thieves don’t love

Your bike has been stolen. Now what? The chance of ever seeing it again is rather low. Unless ... there was a way to "locate" it. Just as the Knog Scout Bike Alarm & Finder, a modern GPS bike tracker, promises.

In a nutshell: the functions of the Knog Bike Alarm & Finder

There are two of them:

  • The Knog Scout has an integrated alarm function. When activated, a motion detector registers movements of your bicycle and triggers an alarm. This will be sent to your iPhone. In addition, the small device also emits an alarm sound on site to deter thieves. So it is not only a GPS bike tracker, but also an alarm system.
  • Inside the Knog Scout is a small GPS transmitter that communicates with the Apple “Find My” app – the actual GPS bike tracker. As long as the Knog Scout is connected to your bike, the battery is charged and GPS reception is available, you can always check on a phone where your bike is.
Knog scout test: this is what's inside the little cardboard box (completely without plastic). The gps bike tracker, a yellow neoprene cover and the small „screwdriver".
Knog Scout Test: This is what’s inside the little cardboard box (completely without plastic). The GPS bike tracker, a yellow neoprene cover and the small „screwdriver”.

Knog Scout Test: The Assembly

The installation of the small GPS anti-theft device from Knog is very simple. The small device was designed to be attached to normal bottle cage holders. This does not mean this mount loses any of its original function: a bottle cage can still be installed over it. This even makes sense: this way, the Knog Scout is even more inconspicuously integrated into your bike. The small, flat, black housing is hardly noticeable when you place it under a (ideally also black) bottle cage.

Simple principle with effect: this screw cannot be removed with any multitool or normal screwdriver. Since most thieves are unlikely to expect this, it is a simple but effective tool.
Simple principle with effect: This screw cannot be removed with any multitool or normal screwdriver. Since most thieves are unlikely to expect this, it is a simple but effective tool.

Now you might be asking yourself: OK, but can’t the Knog Scout just be unscrewed again? Yes, theoretically. To make it less easy for the bad guys, two “special screws” are included in the delivery. They can only be loosened with the appropriate screwdriver without any problems. No one usually has a key like that with them. A simple and effective protection. At least as long as the thief’s do not know about the knog scout. Because they would first have to know that there is a Scout and that it is attached to the bike.

If you want to mount the Knog Scout without the bottle cage above it, you can put the supplied “rubber cover” over it. This one is deliberately bright in neon yellow and immediately catches the eye. This is supposed to have a deterrent effect, just like the striking colours of bees. Apart from that, it additionally protects the device from dirt and water. Thanks to the IP66 protection class, this is not necessary, but as we all know, two is better than one.

If you mount the knog scout gps bike tracker without a bottle cage, you can fit it with the matching neon-coloured neoprene cover. It also protects against water and dirt and is supposed to have a deterrent effect - at least that's what knog thought when choosing the colour.
If you mount the Knog Scout GPS Bike Tracker without a bottle cage, you can fit it with the matching neon-coloured neoprene cover. It also protects against water and dirt and is supposed to have a deterrent effect – at least that’s what Knog thought when choosing the colour.
When a bottle cage is placed over it, the knog scout is hardly noticeable. Apropos: with 25 grams, the weight is also physically irrelevant...
When a bottle cage is placed over it, the Knog Scout is hardly noticeable. Apropos: With 25 grams, the weight is also physically irrelevant …

By the way: Before you mount the Scout, you should charge it again. This is done via USB-C cable and is easier as long as the Scout is not yet mounted. The matching cable is not included in the scope of delivery, which we think is basically a good thing. Because you probably have far too many of these kinds of cables flying around at home.

Finally, a little information: The Scout weighs a mere 25 grams. So the issue of weight should really be negligible. Either way: In our Knog Scout test, the small device was mounted in no time at all – it’s really easy and hassle-free.

Setting up via the app: Focusing the Knog Scout Bike Tracker

To do this, we first download the PDF with the corresponding instructions, which Knog provides on the product page in the shop. Alternatively, you can also watch the whole thing as a video.

First of all, you should now install the Knog Mobile App on your iPhone. Which brings us to an important piece of information: So far, the Knog Scout only works with the Apple operating system IOS. After the app is installed, you need to register. It is best to do this before the next step so that you are ready for pairing.

The set-up on the iphone is done relatively quickly. However, since two apps are involved (knog mobile and apple find my), a few finger swipes are necessary until everything works.
The set-up on the iPhone is done relatively quickly. However, since two apps are involved (Knog Mobile and Apple Find My), a few finger swipes are necessary until everything works.

Now connect the Scout to a power bank, charger or computer using the USB-C cable. A beep now signals pairing mode, which is active for the next ten minutes. In the app, tap the big plus under “Devices” and select the (hopefully) displayed Knog Scout Bike Tracker. Now you can give your Scout a name, “My favourite bike” for example. Finally, complete the pairing and you are ready to go.

Knog Scout Test: The GPS bike tracker in action on the road

To arm the Knog Scout alarm, you must have your iPhone with you. You open the Knog app and check that it is connected to your Scout. The connection is made via Bluetooth, so if you are standing next to your bike, there should be no problems. In any case, it worked well for us. On the mobile phone display you will now see a large “button” with the inscription “Disarmed”. Now tap on this. The label changes to „Armed”. If, for example, you want to disarm the scout again after shopping, simply tap the button again – done.

Once armed, the Scout reacts to movement on your bike and triggers an alarm if anyone tampers with it. In this case, the Scout makes itself heard with an 85 dB loud alarm tone. You also get an alarm sent to your mobile phone. That’s basically great and reassuring. However, we would like the alarm sound to be much louder and, above all, more intrusive. If you don’t want to be disturbed, you can activate the “Silent Mode”.

However, it’s not entirely clear to us why you should do that, because that’s exactly why you bought the Knog Scout: To be warned. If you don’t want to wake up your whole environment in the event of an alarm, it’s better to turn the alarm down a little and choose a discreet alarm tone. You can set all this up in the app. As well as the sensitivity of the motion detector.

Alternatively, you can focus the Scout without taking out your phone. Your iPhone must still be nearby, otherwise nothing will happen. There is a small button on the side of the unit. If you hold it down for about one second, the Scout will be armed. It signals this by red flashing of the LEDs located in the lower area next to the screw connection. Disarming works in the same way. Your iPhone must be in the immediate surrounding range for this to work. So no one who doesn’t have your mobile phone with them can do anything here.

Knog states that one battery charge lasts around half a year. We haven’t tested the Scout that long yet, so we can’t confirm that. What we have already tried out, however, is the charging process, which is very simple: a small rubber cover releases the USB-C slot. If you don’t have a power socket in the bike cellar, a power bank will do. You can check the current charging status of the Knog Scout at any time in the app.

Knog gps bike tracker in the test.
Discreet and unobtrusive – quite useful when needed: The Knog Scout GPS Bike Cracker

Knog Scout and Apple Find My: A great team for emergencies

Fortunately, our test bike has not yet been stolen. Nevertheless, we tried out the Find My function, of course. This works very simply and intuitively. You only need to connect the app to the Knog Scout once. This works in exactly the same way as with any other compatible device. For example, like with Apple’s AirTags. So: In the Find My App, tap on “Add new device”. Then click on “Add another device”. Your Knog Scout should now be displayed. Select – give a name – done! From now on, the Find My App will display the position of your Knog Scout and thus of your bike.

Knog Scout Test: Our Bottom Line

At under 60 euros, the investment in the Knog Scout is manageable. The small part does not offer direct protection against theft, as a bicycle lock does, for example. However, it is a useful addition and can help in two ways: Firstly, its alarm sound can act as a deterrent to unauthorised movement of your bike. In our opinion, the alarm sound could be more intrusive, but the principle is still good. By the way, it is also good that this function works independently of a bicycle lock: We have already tried out two bicycle locks with an integrated alarm function. The electronics of both locks failed at some point – both locks have been unusable ever since. That cannot happen here. In the worst case, only the scout is out of order.

Fortunately, we have not yet had to use the Find My function in an emergency. In this sense, it is difficult for us to say how effective GPS tracking really is. But we could imagine that it is at least not a disadvantage if you yourself or the police have this option in case of theft. In conclusion, the summary of our Knog Scout test is: The small device does not offer one hundred percent safety, of course. However, it can be a deterrent and increases the chance of finding the bike if the worst comes to the worst.

On the other hand, it is quick to assemble, easy to handle and so light that it really has no disadvantages. If you’re worried about your bike, the Knog Scout can help put your mind at ease! By the way, we have compiled more suggestions for protecting your bike from theft here.

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