Apple's Rumored Tile Competitor May Offer ARKit and Leashing Capabilities

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At WWDC 2019, Apple announced Offline Finding, codenamed Blue Avengers, as one of the new features of iOS 13 and macOS Catalina. It allows users to find their devices even when their lost devices are not connected to the internet.


A background process called Search Party intermittently broadcasts and receives Bluetooth beacon signals so that every nearby online device running iOS 13 or macOS Catalina can relay the location of lost offline devices to their owners. Offline Finding even works if the device is asleep, in which case the device enters a "dark wake" state to broadcast a Bluetooth beacon signal. Apple uses public key encryption and rotates the public key to keep everyone's location information secure and private.

Beyond the ability to find devices themselves, Apple is rumored to be planning to compete with Tile and announce a small Bluetooth beacon device that uses the same Offline Finding technology as iOS 13 and Catalina devices. This small beacon device could be attached to personal items such as keys, purses or wallets so that the owner could find them even when out of range of the items. An ARKit "star" image discovered in the Find My app bundle hints at the possibility of using augmented reality to find lost devices or items, similar to Pixie Tracker.

Also according to code strings found in iOS 13, Apple may apparently allow these beacon devices to be "leashed" to an iOS or watchOS device so that the user would be notified when a beacon device is out of range of an iOS or watchOS device. Tile offers similar functionality, which it calls smart alerts and is only included with Tile's premium monthly service.

After upgrading to iOS 13 when it is released this Fall the Offline Finding feature is enabled by default if you have Find My iPhone and Bluetooth enabled.  You can check that Offline Finding is enabled by going to Settings > Apple ID, iCloud, iTunes & App Store > Find My > Find My iPhone > Offline Finding.

Article Link: Apple's Rumored Tile Competitor May Offer ARKit and Leashing Capabilities
 
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cmaier

macrumors G5
Jul 25, 2007
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WTF - who wants this stuff. Get your house in order with your core products.
I would love this. I'd stick it on my kid's wallet, put one in her school backpack, sew one into her school jacket, and put one on every other thing she is constantly misplacing.

Heck, if they give these things the ability to beep, I'd stick 'em on my tv remotes too.
 

iMaK18

macrumors newbie
Feb 6, 2018
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I desperately want them to come out with this.

Tile needs to die.

Tile was a great idea. I was even one of the backers for it on Kickstarter and I’ve had them since launch.

But after using them for all these years, I’ve grown to dislike them. The batteries don’t last worth a damn, and they put off making a rechargeable or replaceable battery for so long because they want to milk everyone for money.
Then they finally do it and change their business model to Subscription.

I’m done with them. They are trash and greedy bastards.

I love when Apple sticks their nose into other industries because they always disrupt it in a very positive way. And in some cases, put obsolete companies out of business who over stayed their welcome. All for the better.

I hope one day, Apple is the only company I need in my life. I don’t like monopolies, but if it’s done right, it may not be a bad thing.
 

ajfahey

macrumors regular
Jun 28, 2001
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Moorpark, CA
And what's wrong with their core products?
Who's to say that they aren't. The personal desktop computing is shifting. Ironically, it's shifting from a distributed and back to the centralized computing model that dominated before the personal computer revolution in the early 80s. Will this paradigm shift have legs? The free market will eventually figure it out but Apple will have to move in the direction of the market freight train. If not, they will be run over by it and go the way of tech dinosaurs that occupied the tech space before them.
[doublepost=1567025265][/doublepost]
I desperately want them to come out with this.

Tile needs to die.

Tile was a great idea. I was even one of the backers for it on Kickstarter and I’ve had them since launch.

But after using them for all these years, I’ve grown to dislike them. The batteries don’t last worth a damn, and they put off making a rechargeable or replaceable battery for so long because they want to milk everyone for money.
Then they finally do it and change their business model to Subscription.

I’m done with them. They are trash and greedy bastards.

I love when Apple sticks their nose into other industries because they always disrupt it in a very positive way. And in some cases, put obsolete companies out of business who over stayed their welcome. All for the better.

I hope one day, Apple is the only company I need in my life. I don’t like monopolies, but if it’s done right, it may not be a bad thing.
I completely agree. Time will tell whether Apple can do to Tile what they did to Nokia. The business model, though very different, could be at least a micro version of the cell phone market.
 

Tivoli_

macrumors member
Dec 14, 2017
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Though this sounds good, but with this feature enabled we won't be able to remain anonymous or hide from view!
 

sub150

macrumors member
Aug 7, 2018
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And what's wrong with their core products?
They have a keyboard that doesn't work. No small phone option that is modern.

I actually like this product and think it works well in the ecosystem given that it's pretty basic. Would be really nice to have something to stick in checked luggage that doesn't require a monthly GPS subscription. Assuming someone with an iPhone will be in range, it should work similarly to GPS.
 

cmaier

macrumors G5
Jul 25, 2007
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On Sept 10th, Apple will announce two options for buying any of the three 2019 iPhones:

1.) Buy one at FULL Price, & get an Ad-FREE experience, OR

2.) Buy it at a reduced price, with Ads !

Make NO mistake, Offline Finding is (very-likely) a Trojan Horse !
This is a giant non-sequitor. What does this have to with ads? And what about Apple’s past behavior makes you think they would do anything at all like that? They are the anti-amazon.
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Though this sounds good, but with this feature enabled we won't be able to remain anonymous or hide from view!
Why not? As was pointed out, the keys are all randomized and rotated. Nobody can associate “you” with your device.
 

azdolan

macrumors member
Jun 21, 2017
82
153
0
Dundee, Scotland
I desperately want them to come out with this.

Tile needs to die.

Tile was a great idea. I was even one of the backers for it on Kickstarter and I’ve had them since launch.

But after using them for all these years, I’ve grown to dislike them. The batteries don’t last worth a damn, and they put off making a rechargeable or replaceable battery for so long because they want to milk everyone for money.
Then they finally do it and change their business model to Subscription.

I’m done with them. They are trash and greedy bastards.

I love when Apple sticks their nose into other industries because they always disrupt it in a very positive way. And in some cases, put obsolete companies out of business who over stayed their welcome. All for the better.

I hope one day, Apple is the only company I need in my life. I don’t like monopolies, but if it’s done right, it may not be a bad thing.
I had no idea Tile had swapped to a subscription service, I was going to get one for uni but now I’ll just wait until Apple releases theirs now
 

nutmac

macrumors 601
Mar 30, 2004
4,150
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0
Tile needs to die.

Tile was a great idea. I was even one of the backers for it on Kickstarter and I’ve had them since launch.

But after using them for all these years, I’ve grown to dislike them. The batteries don’t last worth a damn, and they put off making a rechargeable or replaceable battery for so long because they want to milk everyone for money.
Then they finally do it and change their business model to Subscription.

I’m done with them. They are trash and greedy bastards.
While my feelings toward Tile isn't as strong as your Kylo Ren level hatred of the Jedi order, I share some of your frustrations.

While their newest Tile Pro has user replaceable battery, they are uglier than non-serviceable and cheaper models.

While I understand why I need to grant "always" location services privacy, I wouldn't go as far and say I am 100% comfortable doing it. Take its privacy policy, for instance:
We may share your Personal Information (including your Location Information and your Tile devices' Location Information) with our third-party service providers or affiliates (e.g. cloud-based and hosting services, technical service providers, consultants, mail carriers, communication agencies and customer support providers) in order to provide, improve, and promote the Services on our behalf.

For example, we may disclose Personal Information to our service providers in order to enable them to communicate with you on our behalf. We may also disclose Personal Information to platform providers, such as Facebook, in order to permit such providers to serve ads and promote the Services on our behalf on such platforms. To the extent possible, your Personal Information will be stored in hashed or obfuscated form.

The Services may also enable you to share your Personal Information with our third-party partners (“Partners”) in connection with the products and services offered by such Partners, with your permission. Any information shared with a Partner will be subject to the Partner’s then-applicable privacy policy. We’re not responsible for the content, privacy or security practices and policies of any Partner. To protect your information we recommend that you carefully review the privacy policies of all Partners before sharing any Personal Information.