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What’s an AirTag? Apple’s new trackers

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What’s an AirTag? Apple’s new trackers

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Rumors of a Tile competitor from Apple stretch back to 2019, and the pieces started to fall into place for Apple watchers after AirTag tech was hinted at in the iOS thirteen code and when the iPhone 11 was discovered to have incorporated extremely wideband, or UWB, technology. The groundwork for the gadget was laid even farther back, in 2014, with the iBeacon, a small, inexpensive Bluetooth transmitter that aimed to provide location-based mostly information and providers to iPhones. While Bluetooth can track items to within about 5 meters, UWB can pinpoint them to within 5 to 10 centimeters.

What’s an AirTag?

The AirTag works equally to the Tile tag in that you may clip one of many small units onto keys, a bag or whatever utilizing a separate keychain. The tag can be utilized without the keychain as well and slipped right into a wallet or bag. The AirTag could be paired with items like your iPhone, and it works with the Find My app.

The AirTag is a small, lightweight, stainless metal disc with the Apple logo on one side. You possibly can personalize the other side with a free engraving. The new gadget can also be water and mud resistant, with a removable cover designed to make it easy to change the CR2032 battery, which promises a year’s price of battery life with everyday use.

How does the AirTag work?

After you set up the AirTag (this is how), a process Apple says works the same as pairing AirPods, it’ll appear in the new items tab of the Discover My app. You may name your items as well, with suggestions from the app or names of your own.

From there, you can see the item’s last known location in the event you’ve connected an AirTag to it. If the item is within Bluetooth range, you need to use the Find My app to signal the AirTag’s constructed-in speaker to play a sound. AirTags also have Siri-help, so your iOS assistant can help you find the misplaced item.

The tags and the Find My app take advantage of Apple’s U1 chip with Ultra Wideband technology to make use of Precision Discovering, a feature that depends on camera input, ARKit, accelerometer and gyroscope to guide you to your AirTag using sound and haptic and visual feedback. With the Find My app, you will get helpful notes like how many feet away your AirTag is and in what direction. Precision Discovering also has a voice-over option to assist low-vision or blind users.

During its AirTag announcement last week, Apple touched on privacy. The company said people can participate in the Discover My network without having to share their location with anyone, together with Apple. Carolyn Wolfman-Estrada, an engineer at Apple, said safety features are in place that discourage undesirable tracking.

“AirTag is designed to track items, not people,” Wolfman-Estrada said during the Apple spring event.

AirTags do not store any location data or history, and communication history by way of the Find My app is end-to-end encrypted, based on Apple.

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