Apple’s location-tracking device is finally here, after years of rumours and speculation. But does it live up to the hype – and is the mini-tracker even better Tile’s offering?
What we love – Excellent ecosystem compatibility and precise tracking
The Apple AirTag isn’t just small in stature, being roughly the size of a coat button, its price is also relatively modest for an Apple item, costing £29 for one or £99 for four.
Once you’ve forked out the money, you’ll find set up is very easy, particularly if you’ve got a pair of AirPods as the process is virtually the same; just bring it up to the side of your iPhone, a pop-up will appear on the screen, and follow the steps to link it up in no more than two minutes.
When it’s up and running, it all works very well, with Bluetooth connectivity allowing you to locate the AirTag from a long distance (with the aid of the billion-device Find My network touted by Apple) and Ultra Wideband kicks in when it’s very close to your current location. As the AirTag doesn’t utilise GPS it’s not ideal for tracking a pet but it works very well for lost keys and luggage.
What we don’t like – Dodgy design
However, there are a few difficulties with the design that holds this product back from being the best it could be. One basic thing is that it’s significantly thicker than a Tile tracker, so you can’t slide it into your wallet inconspicuously, which is a drawback. Another difficulty is that the device itself does not have a keyring hole; you have to buy an additional case to attach it to something, and the official accessory actually costs more than the AirTag itself. On top of that, the metallic finish picks up scratches very easily which undercuts its shiny sheen.
If you’re a clumsy Apple addict then the AirTag will help you locate your lost luggage with great precision and super smooth software integration. However, if a smaller and attachable tracker would be more convenient for keeping an eye on your keys, then Tile’s products are worthy of your consideration.