Apple this week introduced AirTag, a small accessory that helps keep track of and find the items that matter most with Apple’s Find My app. Apple designed AirTag trackers to be privacy-first and stalker-proof. Whether attached to a handbag, keys, backpack, or other items, AirTag taps into the vast, global Find My network and can help locate a lost item, all while keeping location data private and anonymous with end-to-end encryption. AirTag can be purchased in one and four packs for just $29 and $99, respectively, and will be available beginning Friday, April 30th.
“When it came to designing our own product, we thought carefully about how to get this right in a way that no one else in the industry’s ever done before,” says Kaiann Drance, Apple’s VP of worldwide iPhone product marketing. I spoke to her and Ron Huang, the company’s senior director of sensing and connectivity, about Apple’s newest, tiniest gadget. “You’ll see that we designed for the privacy of AirTag owners and nonowners, as well as making these benefits opened up to third-party products as well.”
And from a privacy standpoint, that’s what’s really remarkable about the AirTag: Apple isn’t just thinking about the privacy of AirTag owners themselves, or even solely about users in Apple’s ecosystem. The company designed the AirTag with the privacy of everyone in mind—yes, even Android users and people who have never owned an Apple product…
Tthough almost a billion Apple devices act as a crowdsourced monitoring network that helps keep track of AirTags, the AirTag owner can never see which devices its AirTag’s location is pinging off of or who owns those devices.
AirTags also have a unique security feature called Pairing Lock, which protects against people who may find your lost item and snatch the AirTag from it to use as their own. Huang likens Pairing Lock to the iPhone’s Activation Lock. “It means that if you lose your AirTag, somebody can’t just pick up your AirTag, re-pair it with their phone, and continue using it,” he says. “This has been really impactful for the iPhone and we think it will be for AirTag as well.”
Apple has built a number of powerful anti-stalking protections into the AirTag platform. If you’re an iPhone owner running iOS 14.5 or later and someone slips an AirTag into your possession in secret in order to track your movements, your iPhone will warn you this has happened by sending you an “AirTag Found Moving With You” notification. This notification will appear only when an AirTag is following you that is not paired with your Apple ID or another iPhone that is in your vicinity.
MacDailyNews Take: There’s tons more in the – recommended full article including talk of using AirTags to track your pets. We expect to see cat and dog collars into which an AirTag can be placed before too long!