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(Pocket-lint) - How often do you lose things? If the answer is a lot, then Apple is hoping its latest accessory, AirTag, will be your saviour. But can a small device the size of a bottle top be the answer?

We've been getting lost and then found again with the new AirTag, Apple's interwoven ecosystem alternative solution to Tile. For many it'll be the insurance needed when it comes to their bags, keys, and other items.

Our quick take

AirTag acts as an insurance policy if the item it's attached to is lost. Otherwise AirTag isn't something you even really need to think about - it will just sit there, waiting to spring into action when needed.

The inclusion of the U1 chip for iPhone 11 and iPhone 12 owners makes this a no-brainer over the competition, while Apple's seamless integration into the iOS ecosystem - which has over a billion users - outnumbers anything that Tile or others can offer.

Tile, the nearest obvious competitor, has been plugging away for several years to make finding your lost stuff as simple as possible. As we said in our review it has some advantages: a louder chirp, longer-distance nearby location tracking, and an integrated loop for attaching to your keys/items.

But Tile now though finds itself in a difficult position with Apple offering a device that is not only comparable, but a device that many Apple users will find considerably easier to use given that it works with an app they've had for the last decade. And let's not forget: Tile's first batch of devices don't have a replaceable battery, so when someone is about to replace a depleted one, they might opt for an AirTag solution instead.

Overall, if you've coped so far without a lost and found technology service, then the Apple AirTag doesn't add anything huge to the mix. But if you lose your things a lot, it will be your saviour - Apple style.

Apple AirTag review: I once was lost, but now am found

Apple AirTag

4.0 stars
For
  • Really easy to setup for Apple users
  • Replaceable battery - lasts for up to a year
  • Works with the Find My app and network
  • Precision Finding detail to track down an item with step-by-step guidance
Against
  • Needs additional accessory to attach to your items
  • Doesn't alert you when left behind or lost
  • Speaker could be louder
  • Bluetooth and Ultra Wideband doesn't connect until about 10m away
  • No altimeter - so can't account for height/floors

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A shiny circular design

  • Diameter: 31.9mm / Thickness: 8mm / Weight: 11g
  • Replaceable battery (CR2032 coin cell type)
  • IP67 rated (1m submersion for 30 mins)
  • No hole to attach to your keys

The small, shiny white-and-silver AirTag is smooth, Sharpie friendly, minimalist in its design, and looks like a gaming counter.