AirTags are a clever way of making sure you never lose important things again — as long as you remember to replace the battery every year.
Simply attach an AirTag to something, and you can track it within 50 feet of you, with an approximate distance and direction. If you’re not in range, the millions of iPhones in the world will passively tip you off when nearby with a general location for you to pick up the search yourself.
When you open a pack of AirTags, you’ll likely immediately think of easily losable or valuable possessions: your keys, laptop, handbag — maybe even that TV remote that keeps slipping down the side of the couch. However, these are more than just the best key finders, and there are loads of reasons to consider investing in AirTags, as our AirTag review goes to prove, but here are five genius uses for AirTags you might not have considered…
What can I use AirTags for?
AirTags can be used as part of your smart home, helping you find things that are often lost around the house. However, many of their most useful applications are out in the big, wide world.
1. An inexpensive pet tracker
AirTags are small and light, so why not put them on your pet’s collar? That way if your cat or dog goes missing, you’ll have a better chance of tracking your stray pet down.
There are a couple of drawbacks to this. Firstly, they’re a bit chunkier than your average collar bell, so maybe a bit much for a cat. More importantly, AirTags are programmed to make noise when separated from the owner’s iPhone for three days, making them unsuitable to nervous animals (and a pain if you leave your dog with a sitter — remember to take it off first.)
2. A reminder of where you parked
We’ve all been in a car park and forgotten what bay we parked in, right?
Keep an AirTag in your car, and you’ll always be able to track down your vehicle, even if you can’t remember what level you left it on.
3. A way of knowing when your luggage is ready for collection
One of the worst parts of a holiday is standing by the baggage reclaim conveyer belt, waiting for your luggage to make its way around the carousel.
Pop an AirTag inside your suitcase before you go, and you don’t have to. Just sit nearby, open the Find My app and relax. You’ll know when your luggage is ready for collection, and your phone will even point to the right one, saving you from the awkwardness of grabbing someone else’s bag by mistake.
4. Keep tabs on your bike
Frequently leave your bike or scooter parked when out and about? We all know bike locks can’t stop all thieves, but if you attach an AirTag in a discrete place on your ride, then you should be able to see exactly where it’s gone, giving police a headstart in their attempt to track down the vehicle.
Yes, this has actual real-life precedent, as this engrossing Twitter thread explains (opens in new tab).
3) Act quickly, before the anti-stalking feature kicks in. Damage done to my handlebars was likely in response to the regular noises from the Airtag.4) Limit your in-person interactions and always involve the police. Don’t try to retrieve your stolen goods until you have backup.August 10, 2021
5. Find your tent (or friends) at a festival
If you’re in an unfamiliar and crowded place — a music festival, say — then AirTags can prove invaluable. It’s a simple way of finding your tent at night, or even your friends in the crowd.
AirTags are intended for tracking objects rather than people — and Apple rightly has strong anti-stalking protections in place for this very reason — but between consenting adults in a situation like this, there’s no real harm in using AirTags to find one another more easily.
Freelance contributor Alan has been writing about tech for over a decade, covering phones, drones and everything in between. Previously Deputy Editor of tech site Alphr, his words are found all over the web and in the occasional magazine too. He often writes for T3 and Tom's Guide. When not weighing up the pros and cons of the latest smartwatch, you'll probably find him tackling his ever-growing games backlog. Or, more likely, playing Spelunky for the millionth time.