Apple treated us to multiple launches last year with new generations of iPhones and smartwatches to get excited about.
However, there was one device notably missing and we’re still waiting for an announcement on an official Apple AirTags release date.
Hints of Apple’s item tracking devices were first uncovered in the code for the iOS 13 release back in June 2019. Since then, Apple fanatics have been excitedly anticipating the devices’ release.
Like so many things in 2020, it seems that the AirTags arrival on the market was delayed due to the global pandemic, but it looks like the wait could soon be over.
We’ve been keeping an ear to the ground for the latest information, rumours and AirTags release date news so far.
What are Apple AirTags?
The AirTags are expected to be pocket-sized trackers which can be attached to items such as bags, cases and keys, allowing you to track their location from an iOS app.
Similar tracking devices exist already, most notably the Tile Mate (which is on the market now and you can buy for £19.99 on Amazon) and the Samsung Galaxy SmartTag, which has an RRP of £29. You can also get your hands on this tracker already at Samsung and the Samsung Amazon store.
When is the Apple AirTags release date?
Apple is yet to publicly confirm an AirTags release date, however, it currently looks like it should be sometime in Spring this year, with March 2021 tipped as the month to watch out for.
Reportedly, the devices were originally intended for launch around the same time last year. There were multiple Apple events last year where it was thought the AirTags could crop up, but this wasn’t the case. Instead, we saw the iPhone 12 release and Apple Watch Series 6 unveiled as well as other new services.
However, it looks as though the pandemic could have been the main disruptor in this plan, causing production delays as we saw with a range of other devices and tech brands throughout 2020.
It may also be that Apple decided to delay the launch as so much of the world would be remaining at home. Potential users suddenly had less need for a device designed to track items while out and about or commuting to work.
How will Apple AirTags work?
The most likely way that AirTags will work is that they will pair with your iCloud account, as you would link other Apple accessories.
You could then attach the devices to a bag or similar item to keep track of it.
This is how the Samsung and Tile trackers function, except that they are compatible with non-Apple devices which we don’t know that the AirTags will be.
Should you lose it, you could likely check your Find My app to locate it in the same way you would an iPhone.
What technology will Apple AirTags use?
It has been rumoured that you will be able to view the location of AirTags on a digital map using augmented reality (AR) with 3D balloon icons indicating where your item is located.
There are also widespread rumours that the AirTags will use ultra wide band (UWB) technology, which essentially means you could potentially track the location of the tags within a radius of under 10cm.
However, the drawback to the use of this clever technology may be that it is only available with the newer iPhone models, potentially from the iPhone 11 generation and later.
It is thought there will also potentially be a notification if you go out of range of your tagged item. Should this be the case, it is likely you would be able to set boundaries for locations where you don’t need notifying every time you move out of range of your item.
For instance in your home, so you aren’t reminded to stay within a short distance of your work bag every time you nip downstairs to make a cup of tea.
How will you charge Apple AirTags?
Perhaps unexpectedly for Apple devices, it is currently rumoured that the AirTags will be powered by a small, replaceable round battery which is similar to that found in a traditional watch.
However, other rumours suggest that the AirTags will instead contain a rechargeable battery, which could charge in a similar way to Apple Watches.
How much will Apple AirTags cost?
Without confirmation from Apple, there is no official price for the AirTags just yet.
At the moment, general whispers seem to indicate that the Apple AirTags will potentially cost under £40, which would make them one of Apple’s most accessibly-priced products.
Similar devices are also below this price point, for instance, the Samsung Galaxy SmartTag and Tile models are available for around £20 to £35, depending on the retailer.
However, Apple products do tend to come at a slightly higher price point than the competition and there could also be scope for a slightly more advanced AirTag Pro, which could push the price of this version higher again.
What will Apple AirTags look like?
It seems as though Apple AirTags will be understated, badge-like pieces of kit which should be small and easy to attach to a variety of items. Currently, there are no official images or dimensions available.
However, mock-ups have been shared by a range of sources including well-known leaker Jon Prosser. The speculative images he shared show a smart, sleek white circular button.
Apple AirTags (codename: B389)— Jon Prosser (@jon_prosser) September 14, 2020
- White front (no logo) CLEAN!
- Polished metal back
- Apple logo on back
3D render made by the AMAZING @CConceptCreator.
Sources shared with me a video of the real AirTags — to protect them, we made a 3D render to show you. pic.twitter.com/aKGOATXMMO
Other speculated designs we have seen have looked very similar, although others do feature the Apple logo in the centre of the front, white side of the device.
At the moment, we will have to wait to find out for sure but we recommend bookmarking this page to check back for regular updates.