At its ‘Spring Loaded’ virtual event on Tuesday night, Apple finally launched the long-rumored AirTag iPhone accessory, along with the new iMac, iPad Pro, and Apple TV 4K.
AirTag, as the name implies, is intended to assist in the recovery of misplaced items such as keys and wallets. It will compete with similar offerings from competitors such as Tile and even Samsung, which only recently launched the Galaxy SmartTags.
Apple also announced a new Purple color variant for the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 mini at its Spring Loaded event, which will be available for pre-order starting this week. According to Apple CEO Tim Cook, the new color has “elements of sophistication and brightness.” The purple color variant will soon be added to the existing Black, Blue, Green, Red, and White colors.
AirTag has been a long time in the making. It has been circulating for at least two years, with Apple seemingly confirming its existence in a deleted support video last year. Surprisingly, Apple has taken a long time to release the AirTag.
Apple AirTag trackers are priced at Rs. 3,190 for a single unit and Rs. 10,900 for a pack of four. The AirTag can also be carried in Hermes edition accessories. AirTag trackers will be available for purchase on April 30. AirTag trackers cost $29 (approximately Rs. 2,200) for a single tile and $99 (approximately Rs. 7,500) for a 4-pack in the United States and will be available for pre-order on April 23 at 5 a.m. PDT (5:30 p.m. IST). Moreover, AirTag accessories made by third parties will be sold separately.
AirTag is a small stainless steel puck-like device with a built-in speaker that users can pair with an iPhone and attach to items that they are prone to losing track of. It is IP67-certified and has a removable battery (that can last up to a year). Setup is similar to that of the AirPods: bring it close to an iPhone, and it will detect and begin pairing in seconds.
Once configured, its location can be tracked with Apple’s Find My app. Bluetooth and Ultra-Wideband technology is used for tracking. The latter is expected to be more precise and requires a compatible iPhone, which is an iPhone 11 or later.
Ultra-wideband (UWB) technology is used by AirTags to locate items. They include the U1 chip, which allows it to locate Apple devices such as iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch models. When in Bluetooth range, AirTags emit audible beeps through the built-in speaker to assist you in locating the device to which they are attached.
They have NFC and Bluetooth LE connectivity, as well as an accelerometer. The AirTags also include Siri support and are water and dust resistant to IP67 standards. The company says AirTag was built from the ground up to keep location data private and secure. It does not save any location data or history on the device, and communication with the Find My network is encrypted end-to-end.
Speaking about the AirTags, Apple’s Vice President – Worldwide iPhone Product Marketing, Kaiann Drance, said, “We’re excited to bring this incredible new capability to iPhone users with the introduction of AirTag, leveraging the vast Find My network, to help them keep track of and find the important items in their lives. With its design, unparalleled finding experience, and built-in privacy and security features, AirTag will provide customers with another way to leverage the power of the Apple ecosystem and enhance the versatility of the iPhone.”