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Apple AirTag Review - A Locksmith’s View

Apple introduced the AirTag tracking device in April 2021 after a long period of anticipation and rumors. Ever since, the small-sized round device has been used for better tracking control and management of keys, luggage, wallets, scooters, vehicles, pet collars, and a plethora of other items.If you are interested to learn all about the way the Apple tag works, its pros and cons, features, prices, main uses, and our locksmith perspective on it, check out our comprehensive Apple AirTag review. 

How Do You Track AirTag Devices?

AirTag devices anonymously use Bluetooth technology to connect to nearby Bluetooth-enabled Apple phones that belong to the same Find My network. At the moment, there are over 1.8 billion Apple devices spread all over the world which allows AirTag users to accurately estimate and track the location of their devices based on the GPS location of the devices in their proximity. The AirTag will show up in the Find My app represented by a pin on a map. 

The additional Find My app can also be used to make the AirTag device start beeping for more detailed localization of a lost item. Owners of iPhone 11 or later versions can also take advantage of the additional Precision Finding feature. This tool allows them to turn their phones into compasses. By easily following the arrows on the screen until the distance hits the zero mark, users can quickly locate their missing wallets, luggage, or other items they might have lost track of.

Apple AirTag Range Test, Price, and Design

The AirTag measures 1.26 inches in diameter and 8mm in thickness, and it weighs just 11 grams. It is round and compact which helps it go unnoticed when attached to a keychain, placed inside a vehicle, or dropped in a purse.  With an appealing aluminum finish on the front complemented by quality white plastic on the back, the tracking device is a good choice for anyone looking for an inconspicuous tag. 

Apple AirTag's range? AirTags devices need to be located within approximately 33 feet of an iPhone or another Apple device part of the Find My network in order to catch Bluetooth signal and function properly. Sold for $29 for an individual tag or $99 for a pack of four which lowers the price to less than $25 per piece, the AppleTag runs an affordable and fair price aligned with similar tracking options released by other brands.

Apple AirTag Installation 

It is easy to set up, install, and start using the Apple AirTag. The procedure starts by placing the tracking device next to the iPhone that will monitor the tracking device. Next, users will be asked to connect the device to the phone and assign a name to it. Here, they can take their pick from a predefined list of names such as Backpack, Keys, and Luggage, or they can customize the name as they deem suitable. Installation is completed by confirming identity using the corresponding Apple ID and phone number.

Different Uses for AirTag Trackers

1. AirTag for Cars, Scooters, Bikes, and Motorcycles

If you often times have trouble finding parking for your car, motorcycle, scooter, or bicycle, and you find yourself lost in a parking maze trying to locate your vehicle at the end of the day, an AirTag can immediately pinpoint its location via the Find My map. The tracker is also helpful in the unfortunate event of your car or scooter being stolen due to the ultra-wideband technology it works on. The AirTag can also accurately locate vehicles parked underground, with special emphasis on the use of the Precise Finding tool in combination with iPhone 11 and iPhone 12 and newer models. 

As expert car locksmiths, while we do find the tracking device helpful to some degree, we recommend a series of alternative car security options and devices for enhanced protection. For example, steering wheel immobilizers, car alarms, dash cams, brake locks, tire clamps, and protective key cases work well at adding additional layers of security to any vehicle. A quality GPS tracking system can also offer quicker and more precise tracking in case of a stolen vehicle as compared to the AirTag and its GPS limitations. 

2. AirTags for Purses and Luggage

AirTags do a decent job at keeping track of backpacks, suitcases, purses, laptop bags, and other types of luggage when traveling in busy airport terminals or train stations. The devices’ location tracking features and distinctive design help users rapidly find and identify their luggage items and thus stop them from going into the wrong hands. Our experts recommend quality TSA-approved luggage locks to keep the contents of bags better protected against theft. 

airtag for dogs3. Apple AirTags Review for Pets

The same tracking devices can be used to track down wandering dogs or cats around the house or neighborhood dogs with the Find My tool. It is also possible to engage Lost Mode in case of emergency. Since they are more affordable compared to GPS-based collars for pets, the AirTags are good options for many pet owners. Their lightweight and water-resistant feature also makes them comfortable and sturdy for pets to wear. As additional pet security measures, we recommend you consider installing dog doors with locks that can be used both ways for more freedom of movement and control of your pets’ whereabouts.

Advantages of AirTags 

Our Apple tag review would not be complete without a quick mention of the main pros and perks of using these tracking devices:

  • The Find My network relies on hundreds of millions of Apple devices found in all parts of the world, which means tracking is always enabled.
  • The Apple AirTag battery life is of approximately one year thanks to the small and removable CR2032 battery that powers the device. Replacement is fast and cheap. 
  • The device is small, nicely designed, light-weighted, and inconspicuous. 
  • The Precision Finding feature can be used along with cameras, accelerometers, and gyroscopes to set up the accurate direction and distance of an AirTag device. The vibration function is activated when the user is located within two feet of the device. 
  • Users can activate a loud sound alert provided they feel the need for additional assistance in areas that are particularly noisy. 

Disadvantages of AirTags

  • There have been cases of individuals who fell victim to stalkers who slid AirTags into the victims’ purses, bags, or luxury vehicles. 
  • Location tracking takes longer and is more difficult in areas of the world the number of Plle users is low. 
  • The device can only be used together with other Apple-branded products. 
  • AirTags are not sold with built-in key ring holes, forcing users to purchase separate holders or drop them in bags which turn them into items that are easy to grab by potential thieves.
  • The lack of GPS functions in the device makes it less reliable when real-time tracking is needed in cases of stolen vehicles or missing children or pets. 

AirTags - Our Final Thoughts

While they represent good choices for people looking for quick and easy ways of keeping tabs on vulnerable family members, dogs, and other pets, wallets, bags, and even vehicles, Apple AirTags do come with their limitations and cons. If you are looking for enhanced protection and higher levels of security for your personal items, we recommend alternative GPS tracking solutions, advanced portable locks, and security system installation. Get in touch with us for additional tips and recommendations and quality locksmith services!