Apple recently launched the AirTag, a small Bluetooth-based tracker that can keep track of your bags, keys and more. Priced at Rs 3,190 per piece, the Apple AirTag is slightly bigger than a coin and is set to be supported by a number of Apple and third-party accessories. The AirTag will be available for pre-order in India starting at 5:30 pm today and will also be available in a pack of four for Rs 10,900. Ahead of the pre-orders, here are some frequently asked questions about the AirTag answered.
How does the Apple AirTag work?
Once you have turned on and set up an AirTag using an iPhone, it will have a unique name, that will help users not confuse it with other AirTags. The device can then be placed in wallets or bags or coupled with accessories to hook it on to keys. Should you somehow lose these items along with the AirTag someday, there are three ways in which you can retrieve it.
1. When the AirTag is within Bluetooth range (about 10meters or 30 feet)
When the Apple AirTag is within Bluetooth range, iPhone users can simply use the Find My app to ring the AirTag which have their own speakers. The sound will help users find the AirTag and hence, their items. iPhone 11 and 12 series users can also simply open up the navigation mode that will use a combination of visuals, sounds and haptics to guide users towards their belongings.
2. When the AirTag is outside Bluetooth range
When the AirTag is outside the usual Bluetooth range, iPhone users can still use the Find My Network to play a sound and/or check the item’s current or last known location on a map. Once within Bluetooth range, iPhone 11 and 12 series users can again use the navigation mode to track their AirTag.
3. When the AirTag is lost and you have no idea where it could be
When the Apple AirTag is left in situations where you have no idea where it is, like forgetting your bag on a train, users can place that AirTag in ‘Lost’ mode. This will alert users when the AirTag gets within range while finding it, or even if it is located somewhere else by the Find My network.
Further, the Apple AirTag can also be scanned by someone else who has located it. Scanning the AirTag on an iPhone or Android device reveals the owner’s name and contact details so that the finder can get in touch with the owner, even if he/she doesn’t have an iPhone.
Do I need an iPhone to use Apple AirTag?
Yes. The AirTag requires an Apple iPhone to set up and function. Further, the precise location tracking features of the AirTag are enabled only on Apple iPhones that feature the U1 chip. This leaves only the iPhone 11 and 12 series to make full use of the AirTag’s abilities.
While Android users cannot set up and find stuff with an AirTag, Android phones that have NFC can scan an AirTag to retrieve information about the owner like their name and contact number. Android users who want a tracker can get one from other brands like Tile that will work with both Androids and iPhones.
How long will an AirTag last?
The AirTags feature replaceable CR2032 batteries that can be found for about Rs 30 per piece. Apple has claimed that with a fresh battery, a single AirTag will last for about a year.
How secure is the AirTag in terms of privacy?
The Apple AirTag features a few neat features aimed especially at functionality without jeopardising users’ privacy. The entire tracking system is based on an end-to-end encrypted that ensures that only the owner of the AirTag knows where it is at all times. Alternatively, if someone finds a lost AirTag, there is nowhere to find out where the AirTag has been.
An anti-stalking functionality also alerts users when they have an unidentified AirTag close to them for a while without an accompanying iPhone. For instance, if someone tries to slip an AirTag into your pocket or bag, you will be alerted by your own iPhone as an unidentified AirTag has been close to you for a while. On the other hand, if you are sharing a car or cab with someone who has their own AirTag, you will not be unnecessarily alerted since the other AirTag’s companion iPhone is also in close proximity.