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An example of recent Tile products (Image credit: Tile)
But you may also be able to track through AR: one rumor suggests you’ll be able to hold your phone up and a balloon icon will hover over the missing device’s location. Assuming it’s in range of your device network, of course.
But what if it’s not? There are hints of a ‘Lost Mode’ which uses other iPhones not in your network to find your AirTagged item. It’s a lot like Tile’s existing community-locating feature, though that only includes other phones with the Tile app. There might be more iPhones in the wild than Tile app users, but it likely varies by region.
According to Jon Prosser (a leaker with a mixed track record) AirTags will also work using ultra-wideband (UWB) — a tech that should allow for extremely precise positioning.
Prosser has also leaked renders showing the supposed design of AirTags. These aren’t official renders, but are apparently based on videos of the real device that he’s seen.
Apple AirTags (codename: B389)- White front (no logo) CLEAN!- Polished metal back- Apple logo on back3D render made by the AMAZING @CConceptCreator. Sources shared with me a video of the real AirTags — to protect them, we made a 3D render to show you. pic.twitter.com/aKGOATXMMOSeptember 14, 2020
As you can see above, they’re a white disc with a metal plate on one side, and apparently they’re slightly larger than a bottle cap.
Which devices will AirTags be compatible with? One of the earliest rumors cited functionality in iOS 13 beta back in June 2019, suggesting that iPhones running that version of the operating system may be able to run it (up to the iPhone 6S). We don’t know what minimum versions of iPadOS or macOS will be required for compatibility.
What we’d like to see
Sure, the above features are neat, but until we know exactly what AirTags are capable of, here’s what we’d like to see.
1. Multiple AirTag types
Yes, one AirTag is nice – but given Tile’s range of tracker types, we’d love to see multiple options from Apple. Tile’s standard Mate has a claimed range of 150 feet, while the Pro extends out to 300 feet. The Tile Slim is barely thicker than a credit card, while the Sticker is small enough to stick on remotes.
We’d love some variety from Apple’s offerings, especially if they introduce a radically different tracker format. Perhaps a thinner, smaller format to fit on iPhones and Apple Watches?
2. Tracking through all Apple devices
We’re pretty sure this is going to be the case anyway, but we’d love if every major device in Apple’s ecosystem could use Find My to track the AirTags. We’ve already heard about iPhone, iPad, and macOS compatibility, but what about Apple Watch? Given the compass in the Apple Watch 5, along with its other sensors, we’d like full-spectrum monitoring capability.
3. Software insights
Okay, this one’s a bit more abstract, but we’re curious if Apple’s emphasis on health can be put to interesting use with AirTags. Can you label certain AirTagged items as high-priority items that always need to be in reach – like inhalers, insulin kit bags, Life Alerts, or medicine bottles? Can they be linked up to Siri, who can not only remind you to grab certain things before you leave but tell you where they are?
4. Package deals
We’re always suckers for good deals, and we’d love if the AirTags came in enough packs for us to pick up a half-dozen and place them on our important things. Especially if we have smart homes, where everything might be linked up but scattered about the house.
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Apple AirTags – What Is Happening?
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