AirTags: Helping you find your items

Do you commonly lose or misplace items like your wallet or keys, and spend ages trying to find them? If the answer is yes, technology, in the form of item trackers, could be the perfect solution for you.

While this technology was designed for the mass market, it could be a game changer if you have a vision impairment.

This blog gives an overview of the AirTag, Apple’s answer to item tracking. Discover how the AirTag works and how it compares with Tile, another popular item tracking solution that we’re fans of here at Henshaws.

What are AirTags?

AirTags are Apple’s answer to item tracking. They use Bluetooth and GPS to enable you to find lost or misplaced items. AirTags are circular shaped and smooth in texture, and similar in size to a £0.02 coin.

You can buy a singular AirTag for £29, or a pack of four AirTags for £99.

AirTags are battery operated, but unlike other Apple products, you will need to replace the battery every 12-18 months.

You can purchase additional accessories so that you can attach your AirTag to an item. These accessories include keyrings and holders.

How does the AirTag work?

Setting up an AirTag

When you first use an AirTag, you will need to firstly remove the covering. Once this is removed, you will hear an audible tone which indicates that the AirTag is ready to be paired with an iPhone.

Pairing an AirTag with your iPhone is very straightforward – unlock your iPhone, and if the AirTag is nearby, the pairing process will initiate automatically. You do not need to install any apps; you just need to ensure that your iPhone is running iOS 14.5 or later.

To set up your AirTag, follow the instructions on your phone. You will be asked to name your AirTag based on the item you want to track using it – you can either pick from a list of pre-set items, or enter a custom name. If using VoiceOver, the list of items is presented as a picker so to scroll through the options, swipe up and down with one finger.

Once you have completed set up, you are all set to start tracking your items.

Tracking your AirTag

The AirTag sends out a secure Bluetooth signal that can be detected by nearby devices in Apple’s ‘Find My’ network.

These devices send the location of your AirTag to iCloud. There are various ways to locate your AirTag:

When can you use AirTags?

You can use AirTags to locate lost or misplaced items. Some of the items that Apple suggest when you initially pair an AirTag, or rename it, include handbag, jacket, keys, luggage, and umbrella. You can also add a custom name, so you could attach an AirTag to your mobility aid, magnifier, or TV remote control, to give some other examples.

Watch our video about AirTag to learn more and see it in action.

How do AirTags compare with Tile?

As mentioned, there are other options for Bluetooth item tracking. At Henshaws, we’re huge fans of Tile. Watch our video to find out more about how Tile works.

Pros of AirTag

Below we outline some of the pros of AirTag:

Pros of Tile

Below we outline the pros of Tile:

Final Thoughts

Mark from our Enablement Team tested the AirTag, and compared it with Tile. Read what he had to say below:

Will I be replacing all my Tiles…? Nope, not just yet! However, I have swapped out my Tile for the AirTag and placed it in my wallet (with my elastic band modification). Why? Because Apple has nailed the precise way (using their latest phones, Find My and VoiceOver) to find your stuff and how their massive network can use ‘others’ to help you find your stuff too. It really is the best I have ever used.

I’m sure they will bring out the AirTag 2nd generation at some stage and if they include some of the features my Tile has, then I will swap them out, once they eventually go faulty.

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