Apple this week began rolling out a firmware update for AirTags to make it easier for people to locate unknown AirTags in their vicinity. Trackers like AirTags use Bluetooth Low-Energy (BLE) connections to help users track and trace their items, whether it’s a wallet, keys or a backpack. They are relatively inexpensive in most cases, enabling people to buy plenty of them to track everyday objects.
Despite all their advantages, AirTags and other Bluetooth trackers have been getting some negative press in recent times. That’s due to their low price and small size making it easy for some people to use these devices to steal vehicles or stalk others. Apple has been rolling out updates to prevent its trackers from being used for illegal purposes, and the latest update is another step in the that direction.
In a support document published Thursday, Apple revealed that it is rolling out a new AirTag firmware update that will tune the unwanted tracking sound to help people more easily locate unknown AirTags. The update follows a slew of changes that Apple made earlier this year to the AirTags’ functioning to disincentivize stalking and other illegal tracking activities. Most of the changes were rolled out with iOS 15.4 beta in February, while a few more are expected to roll out later this year.
The incoming update comes with firmware version 1.0.301 and build number 1A301, while the previous firmware version was 1.0.291 with the build number 1A291. AirTag updates happen automatically through a connected iPhone, but users can check whether the update has reached their device by checking for the version number on their Find My app. To do that, open the app, move to the ‘Items‘ tab, choose the target AirTag from the list and then tap on the name of the AirTag. The update is only available for devices running iOS 14.5 or latter.
Another thing to note here is that Apple will make the latest firmware update available on a rolling basis. According to iClarified, just 1 percent of the users got it when it started rolling out earlier this week. The number is expected to increase to 10 percent by May 3rd and 25 percent by May 9th, before the update is rolled out to all AirTag users by May 13th. The staggered rollout is standard practice for OTA software rollouts, and helps to ensure that the firmware is working as expected and free from critical bugs that might wreak havoc for users.
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Source: Apple, iClarified